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Emergency medical treatment needed for political prisoner

Please consider this urgent request that I received from Elaine Brown and Diane White.  Please help fax a letter to get medical care for this man…

Emergency Medical Treatment Needed for Chip Fitzgerald
Wed, 07 Oct 2009 18:24:43 -0400

My dear friends,

Centinela State Prison is denying Chip Fitzgerald proper medical care! This is not only a violation of his human rights, but it is in blatant disregard of the federal court order that the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation provide constitutionally adequate medical care to inmates—of which order the CDCR continues to be in violation.

As you know, Chip is the longest-held Black Panther Party political prisoner in the nation, having been convicted in 1969 for murder and other charges in connection with a shoot-out with police in Los Angeles. Although Chip was originally sentenced to death, the sentence was commuted, and he was eligible for parole 33 years ago. Denied parole 17 times, Chip has been wrongfully held in prison 40 years now.

The Committee to Free Chip Fitzgerald is putting out a call for support of our demand that Centinela immediately provide Chip the medical care he urgently needs.

Attached is a letter I am hoping you will print out and fax into the prison ASAP (fax number indicated at the top of the letter). If you are willing and able to do that, I thank you so much, and ask, also, that you either email a a copy of the signed letter to freechipfitzgerald at yahoo dot com or send your name, address and other contact information to the same email address. We will then mail a copy of the signed or endorsed letter to each of the five secondary recipients indicated.

UPDATE: In September, we filed a habeas corpus petition in the Los Angeles Superior Court to overturn the 2008 wrongful parole board denial to Chip, and are waiting for a hearing.

Free Chip!


Via Facsimile—760-337-7950
Warden Domingo Uribe, Jr.
Centinela State Prison
Imperial, California

Immediate Medical Treatment and Transfer—Romaine Fitzgerald—B27527

Dear Warden Uribe:

This is a demand that you immediately provide Romaine Fitzgerald the emergency medical treatment he needs and transfer him to a proper medical facility for care. Your denial of this urgent treatment and care is a blatant denial of his Constitutional rights, for which the California prison system has already been reprimanded by the Order of the federal district court.

Mr. Fitzgerald, who has been incarcerated for 40 years and is now 60 years old, has made a request for a medical transfer numerous times because he is suffering extreme spinal pain and is partially paralyzed, arising from a stroke he experienced in 1998. Indeed, over three years ago, prison doctors recommended corrective surgery, and, recently your own doctors supported that recommendation. Every day his condition

worsens on account of the barbaric conditions under which you presently house him in your administrative segregation unit. The report of Dr. Marie Branch, based upon her examination of Mr. Fitzgerald in July of this year, confirms that the metal bed, extreme isolation and denial of proper exercise and denial of a neck support or even a pillow in that unit exacerbate his deteriorating condition. Indeed, I believe if you continue to refuse to provide Mr. Fitzgerald proper treatment, he will soon suffer permanent paralysis.

The Committee to Free Chip Fitzgerald is prepared to pay for any and all costs related to the services of a private doctor to treat Mr. Fitzgerald. The Honorable Thelton E. Henderson, District Court Judge, and his appointed Receiver, J. Clark Kelso, are copied on this letter to alert them of these serious concerns and encourage them to closely monitor your response.

Very truly yours,
Name ________________________
Address ________________________
Telephone/Email ________________________


J. Clark Kelso, Receiver, California Prison Health Care Services
Matthew Cate, Secretary, California Department of Corrections and
The Honorable Thelton E. Henderson, Judge, U. S. District Court
Edmund G. Brown, Jr., Attorney General, State of California
Prison Law Office, San Quentin, California

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