Prayer For Prisons rally brings emotional appeals from family members, pastors, politicians
JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) – After Pamyla Emary’s son, Gregory Emary, was killed in prison, the warden told her he didn’t know what became of Gregory’s personal effects, but that she was “welcome to come down and watch the tape.”
“I’m more than welcome to come watch them murder my son? I’m more than welcome to come down to your prison and watch my son be murdered on tape?” Emary said, gripping a photo of her son at a Prayer for The Prisons rally at the Capitol on Thursday.
Emary was killed in a fight January 2nd. His death was said to be unrelated to the gang violence that was going on at that time.
His mother says Gregory was her only son, a father of two young sons, and a good man. She also says he was a non-violent criminal in a dangerous situation.
“He was convicted for being out after curfew through drug court after spending five years in drug court, ok?” she said. “He was murdered like a dog, and ambushed.”
Speaker after speaker railed against conditions in the Mississippi Department of Corrections and those who have allowed them to degrade to where they are now.
“What we want is tear it down, pull down the strongholds. Pull them down, tear them down, destroy them. And rebuild,” said Pauline Rogers, a former inmate.
Senator John Hohrn calls the whole situation “a major problem.”
“Guards are not safe. Inmates are not safe. Guards are paid salaries that qualify them for welfare. Inmates are not incentivized to be on their best behavior. Guards work in horrific conditions. Inmates live in horrific conditions,” he said.