Eco-sites are awash with back-and-forth reports of Tim DeChristopher‘s imprisonment conditions (read his story here), but it seems as though the facts have finally come to light. Late last night (Weds 28th March), Mr. DeChristopher was moved back into the minimum security camp after spending close to twenty days in the FCI Herlong’s Special Housing Unit (SHU). Reportedly, the SHU is a solitary confinement block where inmates are given bare essentials – to the effect of one book, one pen and an 8×10 cell to share with another prisoner.
Thousands of protester phone calls to Congress, FCI Herlong and the BOP office (Washington) later, and a more rapid investigation into the circumstances was induced (the original timeline was indefinite). Why was he put into isolation in the first place though? An email.
No, really. An email:
DeChristopher sent this email to Dylan Schneider, the treasurer of Peaceful Uprising where Tim is the co-founder, on March 5 just 4 days before being thrown into confinement. DeChristopher was expressing his concerns about one of the donors for the organisation, as their company was exporting U.S. manufacturing jobs outside of the country. DeChristopher went on to issue a “threat” to wage a campaign against said donor if they did not undo their new company policy. In essence, Tim wanted to return the $25,000 contribution in the interest of maintaining the organisation’s core, forward-thinking principles and his own… It is safe to say that there are more menacing criminals that could be filling the cold walls of solitary confinement.
According to Dylan Schneider, it is articles such as Rolling Stone’s that lead to the kind of call of action that ensured Tim DeChristopher’s move back into regular prison. One critical question need not be answered for now then: “What would have happened to Tim if no one was watching?”