The mother of the Georgia inmate who was savagely beaten, then had a dog collar tied around his neck like an animal, can only watch helplessly as her son was transferred to arguably the most dangerous prison in the state, the media has reported.
Cortez Berry, 18, was reportedly pummeled half to death by up to 10 members of the Gangster Disciples and then choked unconscious. The insult added to the humiliation took place when Berry was then photographed by a contraband cellphone with a dog collar around his neck with his left eye swollen shut, a posture of servitude.
Since the photo went viral, he has been transferred to a maximum security prison, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. A move that was supposedly made for his own protection, but Berry’s mother believes it is out of retaliation for her speaking out against him.
The thing is, the prison he was sent to is worse than the one he came from. In fact, seven inmates were killed there since 2010.
Cortez’ aunt, Shavondria Wright, who spoke with the media when the family saw the photo, believes she is the reason for his transfer; and that it was made in retaliation for her speaking out.
Berry, serving seven years for carjacking and assault, was out of retaliation for refusal to join the gang, the aunt said.
“The (Gangster Disciples) came in and told him that since he was turning 18, he might as well join the gang, because you about to go to the other side,” said Wright; who was referring to the adult side of the prison where juvenile offenders go when they turn 18.
Wright, who says the family wasn’t told about the transfer, are horrified about the move. Smith State Prison is not conveniently located near her and the violence at Burruss prison pales in comparison to Smith State Prison.
According to a report obtained by the AJC, Smith State prison is one of the three most dangerous prisons in Georgia.
“Why would they transfer him there to a maximum security prison?” said Wright. “I don’t think it is safer. What do people serving life care for hurting him?”
The Department of Corrections continues to investigate the beating incident.