Jailhouse Informants


I sit here in total and complete isolation in Los Angeles County Jail and I read, read and read some more of the Los Angeles County district attorney office’s self-serving statements to the press concerning its so-called investigation into the informant system and the “possibility” that jailhouse informants “may” have committed perjury in return for favors or deals on their own cases, and I think to myself: possibility? may? These words do not apply in this issue. Perjury has been committed. That is a fact, not a possibility.

I read a statement by Richard Hecht, director of the district attorney’s branch operations, who said 107 cases, involving 121 informants, have been assessed and he has found none that resulted in a wrongful conviction (Nov. 18, Metro).

With that in mind, I said to myself, he must not have yet reviewed the cases of People vs. Stephen Vuplis, Harold Memro, Kevin Dykes, or the cases pending involving Rayford Fountain, David Sconce, Steve and Robert Homick, Neil and Stuart Woodman, Eddie Nash or Harvey Rader because, if he has, he better take another look. There are big problems with those cases. Perjury has been or will be committed in every one of them and many others.


But then a few minutes pass and I lie back, light a cigarette, stare at the cell walls and I remember who is conducting the investigation, how I’ve been treated since I started it and I think, what the hell, why should I worry about it. The truth is not forthcoming from the district attorney and, at this point even if it were, he has the same problem I do: Who the hell is going to believe him?

After the abrupt change in my treatment since I did the “demonstration,” I can safely assume due to my total isolation, lack of protection, exercise time and privileges, and the fact that I am harassed and also served cold, congealed food three times a day, that the embarrassment of “the truth” did not make the sheriff or district attorney happy. All I can say to either of them is: I gave you the truth. Now you have to learn to live with it and deal with it. I am.


Los Angeles

(White, an inmate in the Los Angeles County Jail, demonstrated for Sheriff’s deputies that he could gather information from a jail telephone by persuading authorities over the phone that he was either a prosecutor or a police officer to show how jailhouse informants perjure themselves regarding other inmates’ confessions.)