The Rules to Apply to Warden’s Too

Posted: August 16, 2010 in Uncategorized

I’m at the Jackson Correctional Institution (JCI), a facility in the Wisconsin Prison System (WPS).  Well, the big topic of conversation around here is the news article about Michael Dittmann (I’m using real names of the people involved because they were named in the media), currently the warden at Redgranite Correctional Institution, formerly known as Kettle Moraine. Apparently a corrections officer named Scot Galligan, along with 3 other supervisors presented evidence that Dittman, had a thing for hurling cold fruit at and hitting the privates of subordinates along with a homophobic attitude toward staff and inmates who he thought displayed such behavior.  Galligan recorded a phone conversation with Dittman to use as proof, even while informing Dittman he was making the recording.  Galligan reported all this to the Department of Corrections (DOC).  The DOC confirmed much of what Galligan alleged.  You would think Dittman would have been fired and Galligan would have been rewarded for exposing such behavior.  Not quite, Dittman remains a warden while Galligan is pursued for court costs by the DOC, was suspended for five months, moved form a day shift to an overnight shift at Dodge Correctional Institution (DCI) and thereby lost any seniority in weekend or holiday scheduling.  His offense?  Apparently, even though Dittman consented, making the phone recording was against DOC policy.  Let’s assume for the sake of argument Galligan did break a rule with the phone recording, wouldn’t you say with what even the DOC concedes Dittman did and how his attitude is required a heavier punishment than what Galligan got?  The DOC would not reveal how or if Dittman was disciplined.  The fact he was transferred to Regranite from Kettle Moraine as a warden would argue if any discipline was issued, it was minimal.  It certainly sends the message to those who work for the DOC and inmates that the process in place for us to use to bring abuse and grievances to light have no credibility, and we use those processes to our own detriment.  But what’s most interesting was the take the inmates here had.  Some who would be called “lifers” alleged while Dittman worked the segregation unit at Waupun in the early 1990’s, he was extremely abusive, verbally and in some cases, physically, to some of the inmates that resided there. Of course, no one lifted a finger to stop the alleged abuse because after all, they were just inmates.  Who cares about them?  So some of the inmates were happy to hear that Dittman had imposed his sadistic nature on those under him now.  They have an idea of the powerlessness and vulnerability the inmates came to know on his watch.  And in a weird sort of way, its justice and vindication for those inmates whom nobody believed.  If you want to voice your feelings and opinions on Michael Dittman retaining his command, please contact state Senator Grothman and ask the Senator how you can help.  Feel free to reference this blog in your email.  No one is above the rules and it’s time Dittman and the DOC act like it.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s