Nashua Update March 28 Print

The following note was written by Berrien Zettler from Columbus, Georgia.

Hello to all and greetings from Nashua.  Last Monday (March 25) Alice and I drove over to the Lee County jail for our weekly visit with Nashua.  Having now entered his second week at the jail, he is busy making acquaintances with the persons in his pod.  He is trying to organize a meditation/prayer session with them as often as will work.

During the first 7 days I was able to deliver three t-shirts, three undershorts, two pairs of thermals, 3 pairs of athletic socks and a pair of tennis shoes to him.  When I met with him yesterday, he confirmed that he had received all of this stuff and is feeling much warmer.  His major remaining complaint was the small amount of food served at the meals.  He accepts that in solidarity with those who have even less or no food at all.

There are now 8 inmates in his pod.  That is three less than he had last week.  However, during the week there was an influx of at least a half-dozen of temporary inmates, including one undocumented Latino.  He was able to talk via an inmate who could speak some Spanish and was able to explain the work he is doing in Americus as well as something about the SOA Watch.  All of them left after a day or two including 3 of the other inmates.  Apparently they were all sent to the prisons where they will do their time.

Nashua has been able to buy some snacks from the jail store to tide him over between meals--things like crackers and candy bars.  He has $75 in his account at present.  Thanks to Bill for his recent donation of $100 which I will deposit in Nashua's account next Monday. 

Nash commented that he is pleased with the amount of mail he is getting. Letters are really crucial for his well-being so keep them coming.  If you feel so inclined, he is interested in what is happening in his community in Americus; also he'd like letters relating to POV experiences with SOA Watch or any contact you may have had with others in the movement.  He also would like to have books relating immigration stories, on the history of Central or South America, on peace and the like.  He wants to use his jail time constructively.  If you wish to send any such book, please send it directly to me [by emailing me], and I will make arrangements to ensure that he gets the books.  This is necessary because the jail may simply put them in the library; he will have no idea that they are there for him.  The jail will not return any book.  They are considered gifts to the library.

He mentioned that if anyone wants to talk to him by telephone, please send him a letter indicating that you would like a phone call, and he will make arrangements for that.  Phone calls from jail are very expensive--in the neighborhood of $35 according to him.  So keep that in mind.  If you wish to telephone him, I would encourage you to send telephone money.  I will be glad to deposit any money you send for that purpose.

So far, I have only visitations scheduled for April 8 and May 6.  If anyone wishes to visit Nashua, please let me know so that I can make sure we have a schedule of visits.  I will remind you that any visitor must arrive at the Lee County Sheriff's office for processing a half-hour before his visiting time (4:30 pm Central time on Monday).  As I have mentioned before he is allowed one visit a week--on Monday from
5:00 to 5:30 pm, Central Time.  Only four (4) persons are allowed at any visitation; and everyone must have a picture I.D., including children.
Young children who do not have a picture must have a Social Security card or an original birth certificate.

Here are the full rules for visitation as found on the Lee County Sheriff's web page:


Video visitation is the system the Lee County Detention Center uses to conduct inmate visitation.  The inmate, who is at a remote location, and you, the visitor, will sit at a video station consisting of a monitor, camera and receiver.  Your visit will last 30 minutes and you will be given a two minute warning of the time your visit will end. Inmates are allowed one visit per week.

If you wish to see an inmate, you must arrive no later than 10 minutes before the start of the inmate's visit.  Anyone arriving after the visit has started will not be allowed to see the inmate unless the inmate is being seen by someone else and there is an available slot for you to sign in.

Visitors will not be allowed to "swap" visits with another person, meaning the first four people who sign in to see an inmate will be the only four allowed to see this inmate for that day.  Visitors who have not signed up to see an inmate will not be allowed past the front desk.
There will be no pocket books or purses allowed beyond the front desk.
Food and drinks will not be permitted.

An inmate's visitation time is determined by the area of the Detention Center he or she is being housed in at the time of the visit.  The inmate is allowed only four visitors per visit, including children, and all visitors must have a picture ID to be allowed to visit.  All children who do not have a picture ID or school ID must have a social security card or birth certificate present before entering.  Visiting times will not be changed and no inmate will be allowed to have a visit on any other time except his/her regular visit time.

Contact visits between inmate and visitor are prohibited.

No one knows how long he will be at the county jail; but, judging from past experience, he may be there for about two months (but no guarantees).  It would be wise to call before you come over to make sure that he is still there.  The phone number is 334-749-5651.  Ask for the jail.  The operator will transfer you.  Nashua is registered in the jail as Robert Chantal.  They will not know whom you are talking about if you ask for Nashua.

Sorry for the tardiness of this summary.

H. Berrien Zettler