Prison Mail: Can I Send Newspaper Articles About His Charges To Him?

If you live in a small town or he is charged with a large crime, there is a good change that at least a blurb if not an entire article has appeared in the local newspaper. It might also be linked to the local news website.  Some inmates would rather not know about their notoriety, while others want copies sent to them in jail. If he wants to see the stories here are some helpful tips.

Make copies – Most jails will not allow an inmate to receive actual newspapers. There may be an instance where a jail does permit them if they come directly from the publisher through the mail to the jail. But they rarely allow a personal friend or family member to send one in. You can get around this by making clear copies of the articles, including photos.

Information – Write on each copy which newspaper the article came from, what date it was published and if there are other articles that belong with it. This way, he knows if anything didn’t make it to him, (for example an angry guard decided to throw several other articles in the trash bin). If you write on a copy that this is one of three articles being sent, he will know to ask you to resend the other two.

Don’t write comments. Let’s say one article suggests that your boyfriend is charged with one burglary but suspected of three more. You may be thinking, “They will never prove that!” because you know he didn’t do them. Don’t write that on the copy that you send. The guards may see it as he did it, and you are challenging the police ability to find the evidence. If you refrain from writing comments about the articles on the copies, you don’t give law enforcement a reason to look even harder at your boyfriend. He may not have committed the other three burglaries, but he may have done things he was not caught for and does not need undue attention.

Save originals: In case the copies get lost, the guards throw them out or your boyfriend’s attorney wants to see them, you should always save original publications.

End result: If your boyfriend wants to see what has been written about him, comply with his wishes, but send in an extra couple of love letters in the same package. Newspapers don’t always get it right and even when they do, they sometimes slant the story to make the inmate look as bad as possible.

More that may be of interest:

When I write letters to someone in jail, can they use what’s in those letters against an inmate?

Crime and Punishment and Obama

Comments

comments

writes about inmates, jails, prisons, courts and the lives of people who live and work within the United States Criminal Justice System. His mission can be summed up in a single word; transparency.