Professionals have been warning us from the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic that jails could suffer some of the most serious consequences. As news starts to come out about some inmates testing positive for the virus–including “Murder On My Mind” rapper YNW Melly–it’s becoming even more clear that while the conditions in prison have never been acceptable, things are getting more and more dire by the day.
Popular Twitter personality and podcast host Taxstone is currently incarcerated on Rikers Island. On Thursday, he decided to let fans in as he revealed what he and other prisoners are dealing with right now.
“I’m currently in my grave, with my eyes open, dirt up to my neck, getting dizzy as the world turns,” he wrote in a long note before posting it to Twitter. “For a month now, we haven’t been allowed visits, legal or social. Understandable, considering what’s going on. But what I don’t understand is how the only people we have contact with on the outside, the correctional officers and civilians, have no protective gear and they aren’t giving us anything to protect ourselves.”
Among other things in his long note, Tax detailed an upsetting story about an inmate in a cell near him, who was just told his mother passed away from COVID-19. To make matters even more devastating, that inmate was jailed for a 3-month parole violation and would have been out by now, but was held an extra month because of the pandemic.
Taxstone shared his note while letting fans know that he was going on Instagram Live around 5 p.m. ET, where he ended up touching on some of the same points he made via Twitter. Complex reports that the Live session disconnected after 11 minutes, and after that, never resumed.
The Tax Season host has been incarcerated at Rikers Island since 2017 after pleading guilty to federal gun charges, following a 2016 shooting in New York.