Why New Jersey Halfway Houses Are Much Scarier Than Prison

delaney hall

Photo: cecintl.com

Overcrowded prisons are placing inmates in dangerous halfway houses, according to an exhaustive New York Times investigation by Sam Dolnick.A New Jersey halfway house called Delaney Hall investigated by the Times has fewer regulations than prisons, meaning violent inmates walk freely. This can lead to violence and murder.

Here are some of the craziest excerpts from his story:

-Two days after arriving at a Delaney, 51-year-old barber Derek West was allegedly murdered by fellow inmates for the $3 he kept in his wallet. He was thrown in the halfway house for not paying traffic tickets.

-Another inmate testified it took workers at Delaney House more than 10 minutes to aid West after he was allegedly beaten. That employee called a nurse, who didn’t show up until 15 minutes later.

-Phil Annese, one of West’s former roommates, described a gang initiation in the house:

“There was blood everywhere…this dude was laying in his own blood on the floor of the bathroom. I heard he got jumped by five guys.”

-And how you can buy anything in the house:

“If you got cash, you can buy anything, even an inmate,” he wrote. “They’ll do anything, get your clothes clean, get you food, books, newspapers, fill your canteen and get you smokes. Just plain anything.”

The halfway house told the Times they were innovative in their approaches and helping to rehabilitate inmates.

Read the full investigation at the NYT >

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