As usual, I’m missing something. In today’s front page story, “Photo From Death Row A Sign Of Inmates Online”:

A condemned San Antonio law enforcement killer sent a photo of himself out of Texas’ death row two years ago using a smuggled cell phone, officials said Tuesday.

The case confirms what prison officials have long suspected, that convicts — even those on death row, which is supposed to be the most secure part of Texas’ massive prison system — have had Internet access with smuggled cell phones.

As always, for more substantive coverage on the issue of prisons and cell phones see Grits. That leaves me free to focus on the less important issues, such as…

I understand and accept that there’s a “time-out” component to prison, and one might assume even more so for death row, but how much taxpayer money do we really need to spend on the problem, if it boils down to emailed or instant messaged pictures from inside a cell?

  • I’ve wondered this too. I understand that they don’t want gang bosses using cell phones to run their criminal enterprises from within the prison, but for the 99.9 percent of prisoners who aren’t crimelords, it’s hard to see the harm to society here.