AK DOC Today

News, Events, and Activities in the Alaska Department of Corrections

KCC helps clean up the community

Ketchikan Correctional Center performed a valuable service project last week. Chaise Peters, Spencer Inkster and Daniel Mann helped Superintendent Mathews rid their area of an invasive weed named Tansy Ragwort. It is toxic and kills livestock and deer if eaten, it overtakes local flora and fauna and removes native plants and appearance.

This is an extremely hard to remove invasive species. But the team from KCC worked extremely hard, and removed weeds from several private properties, and the Alaska State Trooper post and Arrowhead fuel service.

 

 

Meet Pretrial’s new director

This is Jason Whetsell. He’s the new Pretrial Enforcement Division (PED) Director. He’s planning on using his 20-plus years of Alaska law enforcement experience to lead PED and help grow the young division.

Here’s a few things off of this lifelong Alaskan’s resume:

  • 22 years as a police officer, and most of that time with the Anchorage Police Department.
  • SWAT team member
  • K9 handler and instructor
  • Field training officer
  • Interim chief of police for the Cordova Police Department (the town he was born and raised in).
  • Investigator with DOC’s Professional Conduct Unit

See what he had to say about his new role in this interview with KTVA reporter Daniella Rivera: http://www.ktva.com/story/38722705/meet-the-pretrial-enforcement-divisions-new-director

Geri Miller-Fox, who stood up the young division, will be helping Whetsell transition into the position. Her last day will be Sept. 7. In an email announcing her resignation to DOC personnel in early-July, she said: As some of you may know, I have been working on a Ph.D. for the past few years.  My coursework is completed, and the time has now come for me to focus on writing a dissertation.  A dissertation is the equivalent of writing a book, and as you can imagine, it will consume most of my time. For this reason, I’ve made the bittersweet decision to stepdown.”

We’re so grateful for the work Mrs. Miller-Fox did in her time with the Alaska Department of Corrections, and we wish her nothing but the best as she continues to accomplish her academic goals and on all of other future endeavors. Her passion for public service is truly inspiring.

 

Upcoming DOC events

The Department of Corrections is hosting two upcoming educational events. These are both open to staff and the public. We hope you’ll join us.

June 14, 2018 on Facebook Live: In the latest installment of Chit-Chat w/ Commissioner Williams, we’ll be discussing the expanding cannery work-release program and taking a virtual tour of the facility. By tapping into one of Alaska’s resources, DOC will be able to teach job skills and provide employment opportunities to individuals nearing the end of their sentences.

Share the event or post questions on Facebook.

July 23, 2018 at Bear Tooth: The Department of Corrections presents a screening of the documentary, “Breaking the Cycle.” The hour-long film follows the warden of Halden — Norway’s most humane prison that’s showing promising results — tours the U.S. prison system to discuss the importance of rehabilitation in incarceration.

The screening will follow a discussion and Q & A with Commissioner Dean Williams, Wildwood Superintendent Shannon McCloud, and more.

Tickets are $4. They go on sale online and in the box office July 10, 2018. Buy them, here.

More: https://www.facebook.com/events/195405034616625/permalink/195409167949545/

See you there!

 

PED preparing to open Kenai office

“The Pretrial Enforcement Division of the state Department of Corrections began setting up shop in May, five months after offices opened in Anchorage, Fairbanks, Juneau and Palmer. Along with the Kenai office, new offices are also opening in Bethel and Ketchikan,” the Peninsula Clarion reported.

Read more: http://www.peninsulaclarion.com/news/local/2018-06-01/criminal-justice-reform-comes-home-new-pretrial-enforcement-office-opens-kenai

From PED: Officers arrest defendant for VCOR, discover stolen weapon

Last week, Palmer Pretrial Enforcement Officers were contacted by a community member who said a pretrial defendant was threatening him. The officers encouraged the man to contact the Wasilla Police Department to file a formal report; meanwhile, DOC’s pretrial officers were able to follow-up with the defendant, per the defendant’s release conditions set by a judge.

When the pretrial officers arrived at the defendant’s home for field contact, they discovered a stolen pistol in the garage, and another loaded pistol in the defendant’s bedroom and several other deadly weapons. Per release conditions, the defendant was not allowed to possess any firearms.

The pretrial officers arrested the defendant for violating his release conditions, and the stolen weapon was handed over to Wasilla police.

In Alaska, pretrial defendants have always gotten out on bail. But with the creation of the Pretrial Enforcement Division, individuals released on bail are now being supervised by law enforcement. Thank you to the pretrial officers for their quick response and for helping to build a safer Alaska.

Officers support Special Olympics athletes in Torch Run

In 1981, the first Special Olympics Torch Run took place in Kansas. More than 30 years later, law enforcement officers from across the U.S. hit the road again this year to raise money for the nonprofit.

From Nome to Kodiak, the Alaska Law Enforcement Torch Run and Pledge Drive took place simultaneously in 14 Alaska communities to support more than 2,000 Special Olympics Alaska athletes.

And all of the money raised here stays right here in the Last Frontier.

Let’s hear it for all of the officers across the country who took time to participate and to support our neighbors!

Listen: What role is DOC play in the criminal justice system?

Commissioner Williams joined Justice Alaska co-hosts Senior Judge Elaine Andrews and Shelly Wozniak, to take a look at life “behind the walls” of Alaska’s prisons.

Click the link below to learn more about what role the correctional system plays in the criminal justice system, what DOC is doing to lower the recidivism rate, and much more.

Take a listen: https://www.alaskapublic.org/2018/05/11/commissioner-dean-williams-on-alaska-department-of-corrections/

‘Cultivating a Positive Future’ at PMCF

Take a look at the new sign at the Point Mackenzie Correctional Farm. The sign was custom made by inmates, who even chose the slogan — “Cultivating a Positive Future.”

To pick the slogan, inmates got to submit suggestions and then vote.

The hand carved wooden bear was completed right before the Palmer Correctional Center shutdown and has now found it’s place at the farm.

Meet the GCCC Employee of the Year

Officer Angela Lincoln started her career with the State of Alaska Department of Corrections on May 15, 2014 at Goose Creek Correctional Center. She was voted employee of the month by her peers for her vigilance of constantly being watchful of potential dangers and threats within her area of work. Her dedication to DOC and to the facility she works at has not gone unnoticed — from arriving on time everyday, to finishing the tasks presented to her, to giving 110 percent every time.

Please join us in congratulating Correctional Officer Lincoln as the facilities employee of the year.