Diana Rodriguez stands in front of artwork made a prisoner named Raymond Towler in The Federal Public Defender's office. THE BLADE/AMY E. VOIGT
For much of his adult life, Raymond Towler was known by a number.
Released last year from Lorain Correctional Institution after a DNA test exonerated him of a rape for which he spent nearly 29 years behind bars, Mr. Towler said many of those days he spent trying to feel human.
Painting helped him accomplish that.
Several of the oil paintings the Cleveland native created while enduring his life behind bars are now on display in the federal public defender's office in downtown Toledo. His are among several pieces by inmates in Ohio's prison system that are on display in the Adams Street office.
"I was forced to use my talents to get by, to survive," Mr. Towler said during a recent open house. "I think an exhibit like this is important to humanize these guys who are otherwise just another number."
Drawings and paintings created in a variety of mediums line the walls in the office. Next to each piece is the artist's name and the name of the work. The reason the artist is in prison is not listed.
By William Anderson/Argus Observer
Tuesday, December 20, 2011 11:29 AM PST
One program in the area is helping make that transition easier by providing a helping hand.
December 19, 2011 9:40 AM
Parents and non-parents alike might be shocked to learn a new study estimates that roughly 1 in 3 U.S. youths will be arrested for a non-traffic offense by age 23 - a "substantively higher" proportion than predicted in the 1960s.
By The Associated Press
WASHINGTON (AP) — New death sentences in the United States have declined 75 percent from their peak since executions resumed in the 1970s, an anti-capital punishment group reports.
The Death Penalty Information Center said 78 people convicted of murder were sentenced to die so far in 2011, the first time in 35 years there have been fewer than 100 new death sentences.
Judges determined to collect old fees despite a plan to clear ledgers.
COLUMBUS — Ohio Supreme Court Chief Justice Maureen O’Connor says judges and clerks of court will continue to aggressively try to collect unpaid court fines and costs, even if the legislature passes a new bill.House Bill 247 passed the Ohio House by a vote of 92-0 last week, it would allow judges to declare old debts uncollectible and allow them to take them off their ledgers. The bill was introduced in the Senate on Thursday.
BY TANYA IRWIN-BLADE STAFF WRITER
While many of the other dogs bark and jump excitedly when spoken to, he's calm. It's as if he's waiting to hear what you have to say. He wants to know if you want him to sit, stay, come, heel, or perhaps "Give me five."
By Matt Lakin
Terry Lynn Fine estimates he spent most of his life dealing drugs or stealing in order to buy drugs, mainly pain pills, before his latest arrival inside this cell in the Cocke County jail. Fine. 47, is serving a 12-year sentence. That sentence currently costs taxpayers about $35 per day
He's lived most of his 47 years on other people's money — whether stealing, selling pain pills or doing time in his second home at the Cocke County jail.
Easing transition, fighting recidivism are main goals
10:47 PM, Dec. 15, 2011
|More cells at the Jefferson County Correction Center will be empty when a mandatory re-entry program takes effect Jan. 3.|
The exterior of Northampton County Prison, shown in May, 2011. (Kevin Mingora/Morning Call file photo)
11:45 a.m. EST, December 19, 2011
Bay City News Service
The money represents 20 percent of the wages earned by 30 prison inmates who assemble medical devices, San Quentin State Prison spokesman Sgt. Gabe Walters said.
Each of the seven agencies will receive $5,400.