Thursday, August 13, 2020

Beyond the Box Experience in short! for me Oklahoma |State University

Felony Admissions Clearance 

8/13/2020



 

          I decided this morning I would go to Oklahoma State University to retrieve all the records from my student conduct file. I wanted to know why it took so long to decide on my admission application when I previously applied. Student conduct had me complete a records request for all records.
          I was disappointed to receive only the documentation I had sent them.
  • 1.    Resume
  • 2.    A letter confirming the program I created for families to stay in Suites at the Hotel I previously worked. Created so families could sleep before driving home after watching their children perform at the University at affordable rates. The program focused on scholarship students in the Music dept and orchestra but was available to all.
  • 3.    A personal reference letter from Communications Specialist Michelle Hockersmith OSU Staff
  • 4.    A personal Reference letter from a regular guest and OSU Alumni who also had a daughter going to OSU, and I had had the pleasure of working with when I was at the Hotel.
  • 5.    A printout verification that I was an elected member of the State Board of Directors for the Central Oklahoma Action Agency.
  • 6.    An Ad where I'm named in The OSU program for their theatre dept. 
  • 7.    A screenshot of the criminal justice page I have on social media.
  • 8.    I also included a reference letter from Amanda Peyrot the case Manager for Payne County at the time for COCAA
  • 9.    I also took the time and effort to go on pacer and print every writ, vacated judgment, and my final judgment and sentence.
  • 10. I printed out my DOC Wrap sheet that is publicly available to anyone to find to expedite the process.

My last felony act occurred in 2005

My sentence was vacated in 2008 and then pled guilty to the correct charge in  2009.

I applied to college at OSU in 2019 after a decade later and after completing an associate's degree.

After reading this case study, It reminded me of my own experience with Oklahoma State University.

ADMISSION DENIED: A CASE STUDY OF AN EX OFFENDER
https://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1011759.pdf

I just read this, and when thinking of my own experience with Oklahoma State, you would think I had every advantage over Susan.


I had a GPA qualifying me to be in the honor society.

I had worked closely with the University in my previous job.

I had faculty references

I was an advisory board member at a local non-profit agency.

I was elected to the State Board for the region of the previous agency funded partially by the state for Payne County.

On this Board, I serve alongside 4 County Commissioners and a former Oklahoma House of Representative's Members Mother. 

Did Oklahoma State University protect the Students or just prevent someone from trying to get ahead.

My duty is a board member is to oversee the Executive Director and the outcomes of programs, some of which the agency receives from the State of Oklahoma and Federal Grants. We are governed by the Open Meetings Act, and my assets are subject to disclosure upon request. I disclosed my past to the Board at the first meeting in the spirit of honesty.

I have been the General Manager of 2 Restaurants, including financial oversight.

Assistant Manager of another, including responsible for making deposits of several thousands of dollars.

Assistant Manager of a Hotel in Stillwater, working closely with Oklahoma State University.

Legal Assistant in a Federal Law Firm.

Had just finished my degree at OCCC

By the way, my crime is a financial crime for theft over a decade old.

I am just curious about what kept Oklahoma State University to keep seeking more and more information until I went elsewhere, or was that the plan all along. I guess they really saved the day, not letting me in you did a great job! Way to go protecting the University.



Whatever the reason, I applied to OSU 8/28/2019 and never received an answer, not by 9/25/2019, and in my opinion, my application would not be a tough decision.

The people were virtually non-responsive in the student conduct at OSU, and that is a shame considering the head of the Department has a background in Criminology

I applied to Langston on 9/25/2019 and admitted a week later on 10/01/2019, and as I recall, we were waiting on my transcript to arrive.

Should I have been given an opportunity? What am I doing today?

I have a 3.716 GPA, and I am a member of Pi Gamma Mu International Honor Society in  Social Sciences, Alpha Phi Sigma Criminal Justice Honor Society, Phi Theta Kappa International honor society, and on the Presidents Honor roll.

I am a donor and lifetime member of the Langston University Alumni Association.

I am a donor and lifetime member of the National Association of Blacks in Criminal Justice.  

I care about my community and others

I made some horrible life decisions in my past, and I will tell anyone about that horrific stuff, but I usually share things like that privately. I am not the worst thing I have ever done, and neither is anyone else.

I plan to go on and obtain my masters and teach criminal justice, and if it isn't possible yet, then I will keep working toward that because I have value.

 

Legislators, please contact me for anything you need or want to explore that I can offer perspective or ideas. I do not care about your party. I care about solutions.


We need to find a solution to this problem, education should not be withheld because of a mistake. Studies show education reduces recidivism. 

The point is clearing me for admission was not a hard call!


Okc Fox news article after the Ok House of Representative Interim Study. 


Fox News Article-Interim Study "Criminal History Question on College Applications in Oklahoma"


 

Sincerely,

 

Shad Hagan


 


Sunday, April 12, 2020

Reducing the Prison Population

Incarceration, Studies, and ALEC

REDUCING INCARCERATION





In the United States, it is evident we need to reduce the inmate population.
In Oklahoma, we are 100% overcapacity, despite sentencing reforms.1 Our state is not addressing problems of education, re-entry, and recidivism. Legislators remain divided on the answer.
     A 2011 survey conducted by the VERA Institute estimated the total prison cost of 40 states was $39 billion, not sustainable.2.  Our lawmakers have led us into this crisis with the war on drugs, which led to partnerships with bill mills such as the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). Large corporations fund ALEC, and many members are American lawmakers. Lawmakers and corporations often vote on and edit these bills before they make it to the public.  ALEC was responsible for providing boilerplate legislation to state lawmakers to present across the country.  One of ALEC’s most significant contributors is the private prison industry, legislation such as the “Truth in Sentencing Act,” and the “Three Strikes Laws.” It is apparent we have corruption currently in statehouses. ALEC created the need and the customers for their donors’ prisons.
     One of the most obvious ways to start reducing the number of people incarcerated is to begin assessing inmates for release, which are: (1) over the age of 60, (2) non-ambulatory, (3) terminally ill, (4) Incarcerated on technical violations, (5) eliminate “Truth in Sentencing” and (6) inmates who have served 1/3 of their sentence.  Studies show that after the age of 60, recidivism is almost non-existent in all offender categories, including violent offenders.3 If these inmates are not a risk,  help them apply for community services and transition, the state will save money, and we reduce the number of inmates. It would be a great start, but by no means is this a solution.  


1. Barry A. Krisberg, Marchionna, S., &; Hartney, C. J. (2019). American Corrections Concepts and Controversies 2nd Edition (2nd ed.). Thousand Oaks: Sage.
2. Press, A. (2020, Feb 28). US News and World Reports. Retrieved Jan 29, 2020, from usnews.com: https://www.usnews.com/news/best-states/oklahoma/articles/2020-01-29/oklahomas-prison-population-falls-but-system-still-crowded
 3. Laub, J. L.,R.J. Sampson (2006). SHARED BEGINNINGS, DIVERGENT LIVES :Delinquent Boys To Age 70. In J. L. Laub, & R. J. Sampson, SHARED BEGINNINGS, DIVERGENT LIVES :Delinquent Boys To Age 70 (pp. 110-113). First Harvard University Press.

Monday, April 6, 2020

CHILDREN SERVING LIFE


Juvenile Justice LWOP





On March 29th, 2020, I watched the Frontline video "When Kids Get Life." It is disturbing this country has ceased to look at mitigating factors such as abuse, trauma, and mental capacity. It is disappointing to realize as a society, we have decided our youth are incapable of redemption. Judicial hearings are no longer necessary in some jurisdictions to determine whether to charge a child as a juvenile or an adult. The stories in this video are alarming.
            In modern times juveniles are treated harsher than in the past. The Supreme Court ruled in Miller v. Alabama; juveniles cannot be sentenced to mandatory life without parole for murder. However, over 2,000 inmates convicted as juveniles are still serving LWOP. Inmates may even be re-sentenced, but repeatedly denied parole. If you were an outsider, it would appear the United States has an obsession with vengeance.
            In a civil society, we must maintain order and public safety, and there is no question about that. Punishment and retribution are legitimate goals of the justice system, but rehabilitation should be the primary focus after public safety. Juveniles are often victims themselves, as we see in the video. Perhaps we need to stop calling children delinquents. Justice involved child is a more appropriate term. Sentencing children to LWOP as a standard is like saying we have throw-away children. It is similar to sending your new Mercedes to the junkyard because of a busted headlight.
            Anyone can sympathize with the family member of a victim, but lifelong vengeance and justice are not the same things. Why did the offender commit the crime is a valid question in deciding the action to be taken: the mental capacity, abuse, age, illness, and trauma endured need to be considered. Our system fails children every day. Jacob Ind is an example of a child left behind by the system. How does a 15-year-old child process his stepfather throwing him in a bathroom, hitting, masturbating in his face, ejaculating on him, calling the child dirty, and to take a shower? Jacob's brother reported the abuse, and his mother ignored it. Who knows how long this kind of sexual violence took place. Who can say what they would do in that situation, especially given the fact the brain of a child that age has not fully developed? I think it is pretty cold not to consider all the mitigating factors.
            15-year-old Nathan Ybanez murdered his mother after his friend came to pick him up after work. It didn't appear to be pre-meditated and was likely acting out due to repeated mental and sexual abuse by his mother. Nathans mother would tell him he didn't love her if he wanted to spend time with friends; she followed him at all hours of the night like she had an obsession with him. Nathan's mother sexually molested him. Erik Jensen, 16 years old, shared his suspicions with his parents; he suspected sexual abuse after overhearing an odd phone call with the mother. The parents contacted authorities, and social services said the most they could do was take a report. Social services told the Jensens, "they did not have the resources to look out for after teenage boys that should be able to look out for themselves." I look at Nathan as a victim, not a delinquent.
One night Erik went to pick up Nathan after he left work. Nathan told Eric to check on him if he was not out in 20 minutes. After Nathan did not come back out, Eric knocked on the door, Nathans mother let him in, and Erik waited in his troubled friends' room. While waiting for Nathan, Erik could hear a violent fight taking place in the other room. Nathan called for Erik to bring him bags. Erik was not in the room when the murder took place, but admits and believes he fainted when Nate handed him the bloody tongs used to beat his mother and then choke her until she expired. I don't think there was a plan. The boys called, Brett, a friend to help clean up, involving more individuals, is never wise when committing a crime. The actions of these children do not show premeditation.
            Nathan was apprehended and charged with murder; afterward, Erik and Brett were arrested and charged as accessories to murder. In exchange for immunity, Brett implicated Erik in the vicious killing. Nathan and Erik are charged as adults and sentenced to LWOP. I believe Erik was in the wrong place at the wrong time, and that Brett implicated him to avoid prison. Erik was present and now serving LWOP and didn't kill anyone, yet convicted of felony murder.
            Abuse reported to authorities was not investigated or acted upon in these children's cases. The parents, social workers, and the system failed these so-called Juvenile delinquents before they committed any crime. We cannot hold children to the same standards as an adult, especially when they do not have equal power. Society doesn't believe these children are capable of voting, smoking, drinking, military service, entering contracts, controlling inheritance, quitting school, playing little league, getting married, having abortions, or making medical decisions. Children lack adult rights and should not have to face adult consequences. It is vital society find the answer to why these things happened. The study of these matters is needed.  The frontal lobe is still developing until the age of about 25, which is the part of our brain responsible for impulse control. This group cannot appreciate the consequences of their actions or the long term consequences. One must wonder what happened to these children's abusers to make them engage in this abuse. I wonder if they were not victims in the past in some capacity? Hopefully, as a society, we can be open to exploring these problematic issues and questions.
Short Opinion Blog Post by Shad Hagan




Sunday, April 5, 2020

Governor Stitt Failing Oklahoma



Covid-19 and Prison




     Oklahoma's response to COVID-19 has been slow. Our Governor is afraid to act for some reason. Healthcare workers are at risk of being exposed to infected patients in hospitals. Hospitals are in a short supply of masks and protective gear, having to reuse safety equipment such as masks and gowns. I realize many people, in the beginning, were claiming we don't have that many cases, and this will pass like the Flu. First, the danger needs to be made clear. Coronavirus infection is not the primary concern. Coronavirus is more contagious than the Flu and will infect more people. Most people can recover but may need to be in the hospital and require a ventilator. Second, the hospitals do not have the number of masks, gowns, and respirators for a mass amount of infect patients. We should have shut the state down much sooner so we could get back to business as usual, but the Governor was afraid to act.
Prisons are a hotbed for infectious disease. During my incarceration, many people had Hepatitis, HIV, and the Flu was a real concern. The prisons should have been making masks long before they started or quarantined shifts of guards in the facility. Advocates called wardens to donate masks made by the public and turned down. It sounds extreme, but look where we are now. I made several posts about masks when people were calling for release because I know Governor Stitt is a do-nothing Legislator. He created a reform task force, and we released some inmates to reduce a number, and well, that is it: small changes, but nothing substantial to change the system or help people. Everyone, if we want real change, we have to change the legislators, we keep voting the same people in. We can only hope it will not be someone we know in prison that will pay the price because our leader was more worried about re-election than lives. Inmates are going to be infected by the staff; they are the outside variable. What the Governor needs to be working on now is how fast he can get rapid tests or evaluate who has a stable household that can be released to home confinement to mitigate the death toll. Perhaps he should start with the elderly and non-violent inmates, people with less than six months left. It is time for the Governor to grow up. Oklahoma is in a real crisis, and lives are on the line. Just my opinion

Shad Hagan

Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Graduation OCCC (Associates Degree)

    Graduation Step 1




        December, I graduated with my A.A. in Diversified Studies. I will be continuing at Langston University for my B.S. in Corrections and B.A. in Sociology. Ideally, I would like to teach Criminal Justice at Langston University. Teaching will require, at minimum, a Masters Degree, but I would be able to pursue a P.h.D while teaching. I am hoping Langston will begin a Masters Program that will fit my goals before my graduation, perhaps a Masters of Sociology in Criminal Justice. I think that would work.

* I should have the credits to obtain a second Associates Degree in Criminal Justice from Langston this year.

Shad Hagan

Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Smart Recovery Online During Covid-19 (Court Letters Available) During a Pandemic




SMART RECOVERY








     I am posting a few quick links for anyone interested to review. Smart recovery is an evidence-based recovery program, and possibly an excellent alternative to AA/NA, I have even heard of people doing both. The program is NIDA approved and currently available in Oklahoma in 2 locations in the Edmond, Oklahoma area. AA/NA is a great program, but we can always offer alternatives for those who need them! Many people with addiction issues do not want to participate in religious programs, and that should not be their only option. Studies show Smart Recovery has better efficacy for people who are not religious. The end goal is recovery. 





STUDY ON SMART RECOVERY

Study on Religiosity and Smart Recovery

Smart Recovery Website

Smart Recovery Handbook

Smart Recovery Family/Friends Handbook

Powerless No Longer suggested reading