SCI Adult in Custody’s Art Skills Bring Staff and Incarcerated People Together

This article was written by Sergeant Shawna Bronson, who has worked for the Oregon Department of Corrections for 23 years. The following has been edited for brevity and clarity.

AIC Pedro Perez

Adult in Custody Pedro Perez came from a crime-ridden family, multi-generational at that. At a young age, he learned how to handle drugs and witnessed violence perpetrated by his own mother. Criminal ways and gangbanging were the norm. Perez’s father was in prison and his mother supported her family the only way she knew how—selling drugs and invading homes. A criminal mentality was instilled in Perez early in life, and at the age of 13 he found himself sentenced to 4-5 years of juvenile detention with an aggravated assault conviction. Perez explained he had so much anger and rage that he turned to gang activity as an unhealthy outlet for these emotions.

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