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    * California State Prison, Corcoran *

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    (Wikipedia) - California State Prison, Corcoran California State Prison, Corcoran (CSP-COR) Location Coordinates Status Security class Capacity Population Opened Managed by Warden
    Corcoran, California
    36°03′36″N 119°32′56″W / 36.060°N 119.549°W / 36.060; -119.549Coordinates: 36°03′36″N 119°32′56″W / 36.060°N 119.549°W / 36.060; -119.549
    4,601 (147.7%) (as of 31 December 2012)
    February 1988
    California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation
    Connie Gipson

    California State Prison, Corcoran (COR) is a male-only state prison located in the city of Corcoran, in Kings County, California. Also known as Corcoran State Prison, CSP-C, CSP-COR, CSP-Corcoran, and Corcoran I, it should not be confused with the newer California Substance Abuse Treatment Facility and State Prison, Corcoran (Corcoran II) located just south of the facility.

    • 1 Facilities
    • 2 History
    • 3 High profile inmates
      • 3.1 Current
      • 3.2 Former
    • 4 References
    • 5 External links


    As of Fiscal Year 2002/2003, COR had a total of 1,703 staff and an annual institutional budget of US$115 million. As of March 2012, the facility''s total population was 4,500, or more than of 144.4 percent of its design capacity of 3,116.

    – Individual cells, fenced perimeters and armed coverage

    • Level IV housing – Cells, fenced or walled perimeters, electronic security, more staff and armed officers both inside and outside the installation
    • Security Housing Units, "the most secure area within a Level IV prison designed to provide maximum coverage." Among these units are the Protective Housing Unit which holds up to 47 prisoners who require "extraordinary protection from other prisoners." The Protective Housing Unit has been described as "strikingly calm" because inmates "don''t want to be moved somewhere less guarded." One violent incident occurred in March 1999 when three inmates attacked inmate Juan Corona, inflicting minor injuries, and smashed Charles Manson''s guitar. Three other Protective Housing Unit inmates suffered minor injuries.
    • Acute care hospital.
    • Prison Industry Authority.

    Built on what was once Tulare Lake, home to the Yokut Native American people, the facility opened in 1988. The prison hospital was dedicated in October 1993.

    A front-page article by Mark Arax in the August 1996 Los Angeles Times claimed that COR was "the most troubled of the 32 state prisons." At the time, COR officers had shot and killed more inmates "than any prison in the country" in COR''s eight years of existence. Seven inmates had been killed, and 50 others seriously wounded. Based on interviews and documents, Arax concluded that many shootings of prisoners were "not justified" and that in some cases "the wrong inmate was killed by mistake." Furthermore, the article alleged that "officers... and their supervisors staged fights between inmates" during "gladiator days." In November 1996, CBS Evening News broadcast "video footage of an inmate fatally shot by guards" at COR in 1994; this death "spawned a probe by the Federal Bureau of Investigation of alleged inmate abuses by guards."

    A March 1997 episode of the CBS News 60 Minutes discussed the 1994 death, "the alleged cover-up and the alarming number of shootings at the prison." The California Department of Corrections issued the results of its own investigation in November 1997, which found "isolated incidents of staff misconduct" but no "''widespread staff conspiracy'' to abuse prisoners."

    A film entitled "Maximum Security University," which used prison surveillance tapes showing four 1989-1993 fights "end when a guard fatally shoots a combatant," was released in February 1998. That month, eight California correctional officers and supervisors were indicted "on federal criminal civil rights charges in connection with inmate fights that occurred at Corcoran State Prison in 1994." After a trial, the eight men were "acquitted of all charges" in June 2000.

    As of 1999 California had paid out several large prison brutality settlements for incidents at Corcoran, including $2.2 million to inmate Vincent Tulumis paralyzed for life in a May 1993 shooting, and $825,000 for the killing of Preston Tate in April 1994.

    Subsequently, COR has been featured in at least two episodes of MSNBC''s Lockup series: "Inside Corcoran" (which first aired as early as 2003) and "Return to Corcoran" (which first aired in 2005).

    High profile inmates

    The prison''s most infamous inmates include:

    • Joseph Son, South Korean mixed martial arts fighter, manager and actor. He is currently serving life without the possibility of parole for rape and torture.
    • Juan Corona, who murdered 25 people in 1971. He was transferred to COR from the Correctional Training Facility in 1992 and now lives in COR''s Protective Housing Unit.
    • Dana Ewell, convicted triple murderer, who ordered the murders of his family in 1992. Currently he is serving three life sentences and is appealing his sentences.
    • John Albert Gardner III, convicted of the murders of Chelsea King (2010) and Amber Dubois (2009).
    • Phillip Garrido, serial rapist and kidnapper, known for kidnapping 11-year-old Jaycee Lee Dugard and keeping her captive in his back yard for 18 years.
    • Hugo David Gomez, perpetrator of the murder of Stephanie Kuhen
    • Charles Manson, who was transferred from San Quentin State Prison to COR in March 1989. In April 2012, Manson was again denied parole. He will not be eligible again until 2027.
    • Mikhail Markhasev, convicted murderer of Ennis Cosby, son of entertainer Bill Cosby. In 1998, he received a sentence of life without parole, plus 10 years.
    • Yenok Ordoyan, Armenian surgeon who was convicted of welfare fraud. He earned the moniker, the "King of Welfare," and was released February 21, 2000.
    • Joe "Pegleg" Morgan, leader and co-founder of the Mexican Mafia. He was at Pelican Bay State Prison prior to being hospitalized at COR from October 1993 until his death in November 1993.
    • Sirhan Sirhan, convicted assassin of United States Senator Robert F. Kennedy. He was transferred to COR from the Correctional Training Facility in 1992 and lived in COR''s Protective Housing Unit until he was moved to a harsher lockdown at COR in 2003. He was denied parole in March 2006, and in March 2011. He was moved to Pleasant Valley State Prison in Coalinga as of October 29, 2009. He was subsequently moved back to COR, and, on November 22, 2013, was transferred to the Richard J. Donovan Correctional Facility in San Diego County.

    Tags:American, Armenian, CBS, California, California State Prison, Corcoran, Corcoran State Prison, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Kennedy, Los, Los Angeles, Los Angeles Times, MSNBC, Mexican, Native American, San Diego, South Korean, US, United States, Wikipedia

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