What's going on???

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Kirsten's picture
What's going on???

Did anyone (especially from overseas) get ANY mail from someone at Wynne unit these last few weeks?

I can't figure out what's going on. Got a penpal there for about a year and a half, a little bit more, but not much, to be exact. He's never been a man of many words, but we've been writing regularly.

He had a parole hearing in May where his parole got denied (again, but this is TX...) and I haven't heard from him since. Of course I didn't stop writing in, thinking he might be too depressed to reply and trying to be there and cheer him up.

But the more time passes, the more worried I get. I can't get myself ANY info. Are they on lockdown? Did sth. happen to him?

I do not think that this a personal thing between him and me, as we had no conflict and were in a slow, but steady (and pretty regular) flow of writing.

I have no idea what the hell is going on and it's been months now!

Anyone having trouble with mail from/to Wynne as well?

Zannah's picture

Hi Kirsten,  

I joined in order to reply to you. I'm from Leeds, England but live in Houston, Texas - mere miles from Wynne and Huntsville, which is home to many TDCJ units.  

I made some enquirers on your behalf, limited because I don't know your friends details. Wynne and the other units are on lockdown due to a very big case that is currently garnering huge media. One of the K sisters is demanding reprieve for a death row inmate at nearby Polunsky. Famous for its death chamber. Plus, in October, a Wynne inmate died as a result of guards forcibly storming his cell.  

This type of lock-down means zero communication with the outside world. Additionally, applying for parole is very expensive and your friend may have run out of funds for stamps, paper, envelopes. You may not be aware that you can help buy these for him by researching TDCJ commissary online. Simply enter his offender number and last name and follow the prompts. Being on lock-down means you can only deposit funds, but normally you can purchase items from their commissary on his behalf at reasonable prices. Items are delivered within two days. We don't get to see the full list of items available, so I prefer to deposit cash and let my friend choose his own items. Plus, the list isn't always up to date. There’s a small fee for these transactions. 

If you would like any further help, please do not hesitate to contact me. The calls are free for me and I'm happy to assist you. 

In kindness - Zannah

Kirsten's picture

Hi Zannah,

thank you very much for your reply, it really means much to me and I find it hard right now to find the right words to express this.

To read that you really took the timeout of your day/life to find out about things and then signed in and joined here to let me know about it... it just gives me a warm feeling inside, because I feel touched to see how you act on behalf of a stranger, or rather, two strangers (my pp and me).

I stumbled upon a link that looked like a newspaper article, but was unable to open it ("access denied due to legal reasons"), which sometimes happens with US websites since the new European data storage law of last year. So I assumed sth. had happened, but I didn't get what it was.

It helps me a lot (i.e. in giving me clarity) to now have the info you gave me here. No, I didn't post my pals info, as we're not allowed to do this publicly (see points of service of the forums) and there's no private msg. function any more on the forums.

So I really greatly appreciate your offer, sensing it must be coming from someone with a gentle, compassionate heart.

I welcome you on the forums and if I'd be able to return the favor in any way, please let me know.

Being in Germany, I was never able to call because TX doesn't allow international calls. (Which is a pity, but things are what they are). I do not believe it to be wise or fair to try to circle around these rules, for, at the end of the day, I assume they're going to find out, which, for one, would cause trouble for the inmate (least thing I'd want) and second I fear it would be used to make the already comparatively very strict TX rules to become even harder for everyone. 

That's why I refrained from calls, though, of course, after this amount of time, I'd love to be able to put a voice to those written words.

As for his details, he's no longer on here because his ad expired after a year, but until this incident now we kept a very regular way of corresponding. So, of course, I was worried, more so than with anyone being less steady, you know.

Since he's still listed on TDCJ (and still in Wynne) I'm sure he isn't the one who was being harmed. 

And yes, I know about Polunsky. Never wrote someone in there, but through some weird connections (i.e. a customer of an acquaintance of mine) I came into contact with a woman here in Germany who is the widow of an inmate who was executed there. But that has been years ago, so I didn't know him and didn't know anything on his case, either, until I accidently got to know his widow. That was a pretty moving experience also and I doubt I'd be able to write to someone on DR and go through what she went through.

About the account, yes, I do put some $ on it (i.e. for Christmas or his bd), so I know about the list, but thanks again. And just like you, I preferred to give him the $ and let him choose, for he's the one to know best what he needs.

If you like to talk in private, you could contact me at  g e s p e n s t e r k n u d d e l n @ g m x . d e (spaces removed, of course). And no, I'm not really hugging ghosts. ;-) But there's a story to it that illustrates some of the reasons why I do what I do and why I do it the way I do it (including, but not only, writing to inmates).

Anyway, enough said for now. Just wanted to say thanks and how much I appreciate what you're doing.

Blessed be,


Pokeamoose's picture

I'm really sorry to be a bother. Does this mean Ferguson is in lockdown also? If so do they just throw the mail away or hold it until after the lock down?

Eve-lyne's picture

Hello Zannah,

I am French and I have been corresponding with an inmate in Texas in the prison of Wynne unit Huntsville for 6 months, I sent several jpay letters and he didn't get them, I wrote to jpay who confirmed to me that he gave the letters to the prison. . I have just received by mail (12 days to arrive in France) what is long because usually it takes 8 days maximum, a letter from my prisoner who does not worry me these words of great anguish without news of me. . Do you have any way to let him know that I'm not letting him down through someone on the ground? Let me ask you this because you're close to the prison.

In case you can help me, I'll give you the information about him if you tell me you agree.

A big thank you in advance



Kirsten's picture

I'm still in this same predicament, too. No word yet. I feel reluctant to give his info out publicly, but I gave my email above in hope Zannah might contact me. Had she done so, I'd have given the the info directly to her, but she didn't. Which is a bit of a pity, but okay, too. That's the disadvantage of this forum having no PM function anymore.