I open up our conversation by saying, “Hello. I see you all have searched my cell.”
Officer Jenkins replies, “Yeah. We got orders from the mailroom to search your cell.”
I give a puzzled look, then say, “From the mailroom?”
He says, “Yes. They read your outgoing mail and found unauthorized stationary.”
I immediately know what he’s talking about. I have a stack of stationary full of laser copies of $100 dollar bills. I ask Jenkins, “What’s wrong with having paper with the picture of money on it?”
He says, “I don’t know.”
I reply, “You’re the Correctional Officer, you’re supposed to know these things. How am I to know the rules if you don’t even know the rules?”
He looks confused.
I change the subject. “May I ask why you guys tore up my cell so bad?”
Wilson chimes in and says, “We were looking for specific items. We had to.”
“What were you looking for? I ask.
“More unauthorized stationary,” he says.
“Well, did you find it?”
“No,” he says, “Why, do you have more?”
I am honest with them as I say, “Yes I do.”
Jenkins and Wilson just look at each other. My honesty is surprising to them.
“Want me to go get it?” I ask.
“Yes” Jenkins answers.
After I hand over my unauthorized stationary, I explain that I’m not trying to play games and manipulate. I tell them that I am trying to obey all rules and to do what’s right. My action of turning in the stationary is proof of that.
They apologize for tearing up my cell so bad. To this day I still maintain a respectful relationship with these two officers.
Moral: Situations happen. Its how we deal with them that dictates our quality of life.