Released from Parole Supervision-Faith Based Programs

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This Radio Program is available at http://media.csosa.gov/podcast/audio/?p=86

[Audio Begins]

Len Sipes: Hi and welcome to DC Public Safety. I’m your host Len Sipes. Back at our microphones in sort of a joyous reunion, if you will, is the Reverend Yvonne Cooper. Reverend Cooper is a faith-based counselor. She is with the Allan Chapel AME Church, and the reason why we are celebrating is that Paul Tranthan is a former offender. As of today, Paul went before the Parole Commission and was released from our supervision today, and with all of the issues in the country regarding offenders doing well, successfully completing their terms of supervision, well, we have somebody fresh from the parole commission hearing, and Paul Tranthan, and to Yvonne Cooper, welcome to DC Public Safety, once again.

Rev. Yvonne Cooper: Thank Lennie.

Len Sipes: You know, and one of the things and the reasons why we talk about this again, is that they had been here about 1-1/2 years ago, and in the show notes, I am going to mark or show you how to get to their original show, and we can hopefully get a progression of how Paul has proceeded from that earlier show to today, but before getting into the interview with Paul and Yvonne, I want to remind everybody that at DC Public Safety, we read every email that you send us. We take it all into consideration, all of your suggestions, and feel free to contact us at media.csosa.gov or go ahead and simply search on your internet search engine for DC Public Safety and my email address is there or you can respond in terms of the comments mechanism that is already there. We are now one of the top ten websites for state and local government, per Government Computer Magazine and we are now well beyond a million requests for the show, so I want to thank you, the listeners, and the viewers to DC Public Safety, and with that long and complicated introduction, Reverend Yvonne Cooper and Paul Tranthan.

Paul, how are you doing?

Paul Tranthan: I’m doing great.

Len Sipes: How do you feel today?

Paul Tranthan: I feel really good about myself and about what I have accomplished over the years being on supervised parole, and I think that I’ve accomplished a great thing today.

Len Sipes: Well, I think that you have too because within the Criminal Justice System, Paul, as you well know, there are a lot of people who don’t make it. You know, there is research from the department of justice that in essence states that about 66% of offenders are re-arrested while under supervision, 50% go back to prison, and now that’s just for arrest, and for serious arrests as measured by the Department of Justice, if we included all arrests, and if we included technical violations, some people have said, “Well, that 66% would go up to 85% and maybe even 90%.” So a lot of people do not do well under their supervision and you are one of the ones who has done well. So, first of all, congratulations, you are a former offender. Reverend Cooper constantly reminds me that the term offender drives her crazy and she can have a chance to respond to that, and she will give her own reasons why as to this concept of “offender,” but that is how most people respond to people under supervision, Paul, and that’s why I use the term. I don’t even have to do a permission slip for you today. You are free and clear of us.

Paul Tranthan: And that’s good, but let me touch back on something that you spoke on about individuals coming out on parole and returning back in. I once was like that, and I did do that myself, made the mistake of an accident on parole and caught a new charge and to be returned to prison, because alcoholism and narcotics abuse. Well, I told myself, this time when I went back in, that I wasn’t coming back in these bars again, so the training started on the inside of that prison, right then.

Len Sipes: And I think one of the reasons why the program is important is to give people an understanding as to that whole sense of the changed process. One of the reasons why Yvonne is so important to us is that she takes people under her wing who come out of the prison system and out of jails, and she through the Faith Based Initiative takes them under her wing and provides them with guidance, provides them with care. The faith-based community, I think, is a very important ingredient in terms of assisting people who come out of the prison system. I did an interview with the Director of Prison Fellowship, just a little while ago, and we called it the Gang for Good. Instead of coming back out into the old friends, the old gang, or the gang for destruction, this was a Gang for Good, and that’s how we referred to the faith-based movement. So you have to have that personal conviction. Okay, every offender that I have ever talked to, every person caught up in the Criminal Justice System, and Yvonne is looking at me (regarding the term offender), has basically said the same thing.

Okay, so if you are not ready, there is nothing we can do?

Paul Tranthan: I believe the individual must be, they have to be ready. It’s on them. You can do everything you would like to do to help this individual to see the other side of life or see ,

Len Sipes: How do you figure out who is ready and who is not? Because every person I have ever talked to in person, every person says, “Yeah, man, I’m not going to go back. I’m not going to go back,” and some of these people have been through a lot of programming, and then when I ran group in the Maryland Prison System, you would get a call from his wife three weeks later saying, “Leonard, he’s back on the corner.”

Paul Tranthan: Short and simple, you will know not by their words, but by their actions.

Len Sipes: Well, but we’ve got to supervise offenders, and there are hundreds and hundreds of thousands of people coming out of the prison system every year, between 650- and 700,000. That’s not including the ones, the millions, that are already out there under supervision. How do we, within the Criminal Justice System, make that miraculous discovery as to who is good and who is not? I mean, their actions speak for themselves, I understand that, but at what point do you wait? How many times do you wait? Three drug positives? Four drug positives? Five drug positives? Not going to treatment? Going but not cooperating? Employed but not successfully employed? At what point do you simply yank that person and throw him back in prison?

Paul Tranthan: Well, what had happened for me was that I had to believe in myself and once I believed in myself and told myself that I was not going to come back behind these bars ever again, you know, change automatically started for me. As far as when individuals come out and start off doing good, and then end up back in there for whatever reason it may be, well if they need to communicate with their supervisor, or whoever the parole officer is for them, and the parole officer must have an understanding to this individual, not excusing their negative behavior, or negative actions. Now, if an individual comes to the parole officer or probation officer and tells them about a problem that they are having on the job, or at home, then the probation officer tries to intervene and tries to give them the best advice and help and counseling through counselors, or helping them, and then they don’t adhere to it, then it’s the part of the parole officer of the probation officer that needs to make a decision whether or not this individual should remain in the street or be re-incarcerated.

Len Sipes: I know that. We all know that. What is the magic formula that we can use, and the answer is, there is no magic formula. You know what I mean? You know, I had a very interesting case in Baltimore when I worked for the Maryland system, and here is a guy. He comes out of prison. The wife lets him come home, and he’s being a good father. He’s being a good husband. He’s going to work. He’s going to drug treatment, but he keeps pulling positives for marijuana. Okay, now one marijuana, two marijuana, three marijuanas, that’s one thing. Four marijuana and five marijuana, and I think you are talking about drug positives and we are up to six now. What do you do with that person? So they are reading this guy the riot act, saying he’s about the blow the whole thing, and there is a certain point where there is no choice but to send him back to prison. Seven positives, eight positives, nine positives, you know? There’s a certain point where you’re just risking everything. Now, what had happened with this person is that we did intervene and the entire family intervened, and that’s when he stopped. That’s when he stopped, but if head gone out and committed a crime, and the public knew that we knew that he had pulled nine positives for drugs, and we didn’t do anything with him, and he goes out and hurts somebody, boy, they are going to be yelling at us and screaming at us, and it’s going to be on the front page of the newspapers. That’s what we, in the Criminal Justice System, have got to deal with. What I’m doing, is trying to figure out from you, what can we do better? What should we do better in terms with dealing with offenders because virtually all offenders bring problems to the table?

Paul Tranthan: Well, once again, I truly believe that it is on the individual themselves. Now, the question you are asking me, what can you all do to better help the offenders? I believe that you can get more deeply involved with the individual, you know, instead of giving so many offenders to a few parole officers or probation officers, you should have more probation officers where they can afford to have like one to maybe three offenders at a time, and I’m just saying that number, maybe a little bit more where they can put a little bit more quality time into this individual and maybe can help this individual stay on the street. But, once again, no matter how much one does for an individual that has come home and decides they want to continue, no matter how much you do, if they want to use drugs, they are going to use drugs. They will get around the system, do you know what I’m saying? I can remember when I was doing drugs back in 2000 when all this began for me. I knew when to get high and when not to get high. I knew when to come down to the parole officer and I knew my urine was going to come out clean, and I was totally dirty, so it’s on the individual, and I say that because I used to be a drug addict. I used to be an alcoholic addict. So it’s on the individual. Now, that’s my only solution to helping an individual that is incarcerated that comes home, and then talking to them, counseling them, and letting them know you don’t have to come out here and try to get and obtain everything just like that. It took time for you to destroy your life. It’s going to take time for you to rebuild your life. It’s going to take time for you to get the community to trust you again, and I won’t say that they won’t because so many people have trusted me. You would not even begin to believe or imagine all of the trust that I have received from the community and from those in high positions, nice jobs, and just have trusted me, and I have not violated that trust, or betrayed their trust or belief in me. I believe that individuals, and once again, I’m strongly believe that it has to be on the individual themselves. You know, CSOSA ,

Len Sipes: Which is our agency, Court Services Offender Supervision Agency, go ahead please.

Paul Tranthan: CSOSA, and anyone. Your parents, your pastor, they can do everything in the moon or up under the earth to try and help this individual to see the light, but if this individual does not believe within themselves or is not ready, there is really not too much that you can do.

Len Sipes: Alright, let me ask you this, this organization, and I won’t ask you to comment on all 50 Parole and Probation organizations out there and throughout the country, this organization. Do you feel that , you know, I had somebody tell me at one point, when we were having this same discussion, “Just be ready for me. When I’m ready to make that change, please be ready for me.” Please be ready for those people who have made that personal commitment to substantial change. Do you think that were ready? Do we have enough drug treatment? Do we have enough mental health programs? Do we have enough vocational programs? Do we have enough interventions to meaningful help those people who do want to make that break?

Paul Tranthan: Mr. Sipes, the answer to your question is yes. You all are more than ready, and the reason why, back in 1989-1990, the judicial system wasn’t as sensitive to individuals being incarcerated and coming back home. They showed where they could care less, you know what I’m saying? It was a revolving door, and they could care less? Okay, if you violate or you mess up, you are going back in prison, that’s it and that’s all, but today there are more programs for ex-offenders. There are more jobs now that would never hire ex-offenders in my belief, such as metro. Metro has hired.

Len Sipes: The subway and the bus.

Paul Tranthan: Exactly, correct. There are places and there are jobs now where you can go in and unless they tell you, you wouldn’t know it, that they are an ex-offender and they have been incarcerated. They might have been in on a minor misdemeanor, or it may have been a felony, but the bottom line is that they are in positions or working jobs that one time you would not see someone that was an ex-offender.

Len Sipes: That’s part of my contention of the fact that, you know, people feel that they are free of the issue, depending upon where they live, whether they live in a low-crime neighborhood in Washington DC, or whether they live in the suburbs, my contention all along is that anywhere in this country, if you live within a 15-minute drive of any major metropolitan area, you are interacting with hundreds of ex-offenders every day, and you just don’t know it.

Paul Tranthan: And you just don’t realize it. You know, that’s ironic that you said that, because I said that last night to an individual that was talking about that. I said, “Unless that individual told you that they was a offender, or unless I told you that I’ve been in prison, you would never know, according to how I act, how I dress, how I talk ,”

Len Sipes: And how you carry yourself. That’s exactly right, but you can tell in many cases because some people wear it like a badge of honor. I don’t know why they do what they do, but some people just scream, “I’ve served time,” correct?

Paul Tranthan: Some do, and a lot don’t and you know I believe that the reason why is at one time it was ignorance, and I would even say it’s the epitome of ignorance that you want to say, “Yeah, I’ve been locked up, and I’ve done time for this, you better check my record?” I don’t need to check your record, do you understand? I don’t want to check your record? I mean, what can you do for society today? And what are you doing for society if you are not a locked up man?

Len Sipes: What are you doing for your kids, because 60-70% of people coming out of prison have kids.

Paul Tranthan: Right, exactly, and you know what were you? At the time that you were incarcerated, what was that young lady going through? How was she struggling? How was she making it to take care of your child and the kids? So, personally, I’m not ashamed of being locked up because I don’t think that God sends anyone to prison, but he will allow you to go to prison, and but once I went to prison, I realized for myself that I am not no jail mate or jail material and I cared enough about myself not to be sitting in behind these bars. I thought enough of me as an individual, as a person, as a human, you know, that this is not my life, and this is not what I , I would rather be out in the street, walking the streets than to be incarcerated in a room where I could not move at my own will.

Len Sipes: In terms of all of that, is that so many people that I have known throughout my career have said the same thing but still end up with the needle in the arm, still end up snorting, still end up drugging, and still end up back in prison. So it’s always the fascinating thing to me, and that is an honest to god success case. You and Yvonne, I mean, you set the perfect example for what it is that we could do, should do regarding individuals coming out of the prison system, but the tragedy is that there are a lot of people that simply get sucked back in to the lifestyle, and that’s always puzzled me as to what the difference is to those people who don’t get sucked back into the lifestyle, and the people who do.

Paul Tranthan: Well, for me, Leonard, what helped me and what encouraged me, and I have to give respect and acknowledgement to those that supported me the entire time that I’ve been out in the community, and I’m not going to say the streets, because I’m back into the community. You know, no one, and my church, yes, number one, my church and my pastor. The first pastor that believed in me was Reverend Lipscom, okay, and another pastor, minister, reverend is Reverend Yvonne Cooper.

Len Sipes: Who is by these microphones.

Paul Tranthan: Right beside me.

Len Sipes: Okay, I’ve never seen Yvonne so quiet in my life. Go ahead.

Paul Tranthan: And who sits besides me who not only guides me, but she has become comfortable in favoring me that one day she called me and she said, “I don’t want you calling me Reverend Cooper anymore. I want you calling me Mama, or Mother Cooper,” and at first I had a hard part in doing that because of my background and about my family, my personal family, and then I thought about it, and I said, “She has been a mother figure with me.” And I also want to thank my pastor now, my present pastor, and that Michael E. Bell, Senior, and he has encouraged me and supports me as well as I am his steward. You know, a lot of people have placed, and I’m going back to the trust part. A lot of people have put a lot of trust in me, even CSOSA, and I want to thank them. They have called and asked me to be a mentor to people that’s coming out of prison.

Len Sipes: And your being a mentor right now to so many people. I mean, I want to go over to Yvonne in just a couple of seconds, but the key issue for me is, by the way, in terms of the question, do we have enough resources here at CSOSA, and my answer is going to be no. I believe that there should be more drug therapy that we control, more job placement, more mental health. You know, 50% of offenders coming out of the prison system are claiming mental health issues, and that’s something we should be doing more about. If you can’t find a legal place to live outside the shelter, I would like to see us have some capacity for having a legal place to live. So, you are being kind, I think, in terms of do we have all we need. And we are one of the better-equipped probation agencies in the country. We are probably the shining star of an example in terms of all of the programs we have. My heavens, we have this whole hospital wing that we control, that we built in terms of helping people, the really hard cases, escape that life of drugs and crime, so we do a lot, but in my own personal opinion we could be doing a lot more.

Paul Tranthan: Okay, let me be clear on you with that, and I still stick with the answer yes because of the simple fact that a lot of the programs that you have now, available to ex-offenders coming out, you did not have back then.

Len Sipes: Yes, I agree.

Paul Tranthan: So that was the reason why I said you all are doing great right now. Yes, we can always do better in helping individuals that come out of prison and try to keep them out, but I’d be returning right back to the same thing that I originally said in the beginning, it depends on the individual, and for me, you know, I want to touch base on this mental health issue. You know, when I went to jail, they tried to say that I had a mental problem, just because I wanted to defend myself in jail, and I wasn’t going to let anybody beat up on me. I didn’t go to jail as a punk, and I ain’t coming out as punk, you understand? So, therefore, they wanted to give me drugs, mental/psychotropic drugs because they felt as though I had a problem. Well, Mr. Lennie, I don’t boast about it, but I’ve been home since 2003 and I’m not on one psychotic drug, you know what I’m saying? And I haven’t committed a crime, and I even stopped smoking, October the first of 2000, at 6:45 a.m. in the morning, and I stopped smoking cigarettes in jail. And I’ve gone through a lot of stuff out here that would cause a lot of people to return back to smoking, and everything, but I have not decided and do not have any intention ever of going back to smoking cigarettes, so like I said, I’m going to stick with it, and it depends on the individual. If you choose to want to do it, then you do it. Accept the responsibility, do you know what I’m saying.

Len Sipes: Okay, we are going to go over to Yvonne. Boy, Yvonne, you’ve been quiet throughout this whole process. I’ve never seen you so quiet. Tell me a little bit about Paul and give me a little bit of history now. We only have about nine minutes left in the program, but give me a little bit of history and the chemistry between you and Paul, and did you feel when you first met Paul that Paul was a done-deal, that Paul was going to succeed, or that Paul needed work?

Reverend Yvonne Cooper: Well, first of all, let me say I’ve been sitting here just beaming and smiling from ear to ear, so very, very proud of Paul, and yes he is my son, and he knows I’ll go up aside his head if he doesn’t call me mom, because he is like a son to me. And, you know, when I first met Paul, Pastor Lipscomb, introduced me to Paul and I was skeptical. I’m skeptical even today as I meet people who come home from prison. I know people who are skeptical of me when I came home from prison and it did not mean that I was not going to give Paul a chance, and I did give him a chance, but I did not close my eyes. I kept my eyes open, one eye open all the time, watching him, and I tried to see him and figure him out, and he truly, it didn’t take him long, for him to prove to me that he is somebody that you could truly trust. And I’m so excited that Paul mentioned the fact that he’s a steward at our church. It takes a big to-do to be called a steward at an AME church, and he is a steward, the pastor’s right hand man. The Pastor trusts him not only with the goings on of the church inside, but with his family and other issues as well, and so Paul has really stepped up to the plate and I am very, very proud of him.

Len Sipes: Tell me a little bit about the Faith Based Initiative, quickly, because the power of the Gang for Good, and I did that radio show on prison ministries and we both described it as a Gang for Good, and I mean a lot of people when they come out of the prison system they want a group experience, and that group experience, eight times out of ten, seven times out of ten, is your old buddies. It’s your old friends, and you are hanging out around that same corner, doing that same stuff, is reinforcing, it’s embracing. It’s something familiar. It is really hard for people to give up their old friends. The faith based community, and whether it’s the Islamic community, or whether it’s Judaism, or whether it is Christianity, the faith based community seems to have this magical formula for helping people cross that bridge from tax burden to taxpayer.

Reverend Yvonne Cooper: Well, you know, you asked earlier to Paul what is that magic thing? How many times do you help this person out that keeps going back and forth in the prison making it appear to be a revolving door? Well, when you deal with the faith based folk, particularly Christians, and Judaism, Jesus said, and he was very clear, how many times are you going to forgive a person? Well, he said 7 x 70, however many times it takes, we are going to have to make sure that we allow the person, that we will allow the person an opportunity to do the right thing.

Len Sipes: But the Criminal Justice System can’t do that.

Reverend Yvonne Cooper: Well, I don’t know what you mean when you say that.

Len Sipes: There’s a certain point where if the person screws up and makes a certain amount of mistakes, there is a certain point where you’ve got to do something.

Reverend Yvonne Cooper: Oh, no, I’m talking about the faith base. I’m talking about faith base. I’m not talking about the Criminal Justice System.

Len Sipes: So the faith based folks can intervene, and then in some cases it is far more meaningful for you than when we can intervene. The faith based community can come in and say, “Yeah, he’s got three positives. We are going to have to redouble or re-triple, if there is such a word, or efforts to help him kick this issue once and for all.”

Reverend Yvonne Cooper: You’re talking about three positives, and I’m glad you mentioned that. You know, the biggest problem that people have today, those that are incarcerated, is drugs, and you hit the nail right on the head. They keep coming back because they keep relapsing, and if they relapse, well then they are going to go out and do things that a druggy will do, and so if CSOSA would identify more drug treatment programs, because there is a lack for them. We need more drug treatment programs. You, today, a person goes in and they get seven days of treatment at detox, here in Washington DC, and they are out the door. There is no place for them to go.

Len Sipes: Or, if they go into, and this is the national experience, if they go to treatment, it’s cookie cutter treatment, and it is not designed for that individual, and at most, at most it is outpatient and twice a week in terms of a group setting. A lot of people need a lot more than that to kick drugs, and that’s just the hard cold reality of the research.

Reverend Yvonne Cooper: Absolutely. Absolutely. Absolutely, you are correct about that, and I’m conscious about the time as well, but just to piggyback on this issue concerning what you just said, and just related to Paul. When Paul came home, Paul came from an adoptive family, and he was a foster care kid, as I guess I should say, and so he didn’t have the kind of structure or love that you might have grown up with, or the structure that I grew up with. We had to surround Paul with love and let him know that we loved him, that we supported him, and that we cared for him. A lot of these people in prison today, and I’m speaking from experience, not just having been there and done that in prison myself, but working with those that come home and have come home now, and a lot of these people have not even had a hug from someone. I ran into a young man who was 17 years old who was pressed about getting a hug, and I’m saying, “Why do you want a hug,” and I learned later, he raised himself since he was seven years old. He had never had a hug.

Len Sipes: And that’s not unusual, and I understand that the overwhelming majority of people caught up in the Criminal Justice System have a similar experience. Yeah, and when we are talking about raising themselves, early onset of alcohol use or early onset of drugs. You know, getting involved in the lifestyle very early. I’m talking about 9, 10, 11, 12, 13. So, they don’t know what to come back to, and so that’s my point in terms of the faith based community. Government cannot offer that welcoming structure. Government cannot create this Gang for Good. Only the faith based communities can do this.

Reverend Yvonne Cooper: I think I might have mentioned this before, and if I’m redundant, it needs to be said again. It is not really the government’s responsibility, in my mind’s eye, it’s the faith based community’s responsibility, and back in the day, in biblical days, there were cities of refuge that were put in place when a person committed a crime, and this was in Bible days, in the biblical days, and then after that, after the cities of refuge, then there was penitence that was put in place by the Catholic church. If you did something wrong, you have to pay penitence. Then, after that, you move along, and it was Mormons that put in place the first penitentiary. So, in my mind’s eye, Lennie, it’s the church’s responsibility, not the government. It’s a good thing that the government is helping out, but the church needs to step up to the plate, and I’m talking to all those that might listen to this, all these church going folks, the pastors, the bishops, the elders, whomever it might be. It is our responsibility as a faith based community to help those that can’t help themselves. I’m talking about the least limited and the lost. Someone like Paul, praise God, that did not fall through the cracks because he had somebody to help him out, but it’s our responsibility, but suddenly the government has a few dollars and they want to do a little something with it.

Len Sipes: And I’m not going to disagree with that, but I mean, here is the bottom line about this. Paul’s been out there thugging, and now that means people are going to continue their lives without being victimized. I am going to guess that Paul’s transformation is saving government hundreds of thousands of dollars instead of us putting him back in prison, maintaining him in prison, building him a prison and following him up with community supervision, providing him with programs. I mean, when a person crosses this bridge, it’s just not a matter of a person crossing the bridge. We are talking about very, very concrete benefits, and Paul I’m going to end the program with you because we are just about out of time. One of the things that you are doing now, by the way, you are the circulation manager for one of the newspapers here in town, correct?

Paul Tranthan: That’s correct.

Len Sipes: And what’s the newspaper?

Paul Tranthan: The Washington Former newspaper.

Len Sipes: Okay, and I guess that’s a pretty good feeling, being a circulation manager, and you have all that responsibility and that will give you a chance to move on to other things sometime in the future.

Paul Tranthan: Yes, it’s a stepping stone for me and I really appreciate and have much respect and love for my boss, in actually trusting that I can manage her paper going into the community. Also, I have other individuals that call me ask me to circulate their material, and they trust me. I just, as a matter of fact, I received a job last night. The lady said she expects her boss to really appreciate how I distributed her material, and recorded it and gave her back the information, and when I said I was going to do it. Then, also, I’ve had other jobs. I used to work for Safeway and I used to be a stock book manager there, but I started off as a courtesy clerk and built myself up, and worked myself up the ladder. So, as I go back to it, like I said, in the beginning, there were a lot of people that trusted in me, had faith in me and helped me, and also the belief that I had in myself, helped me to continue to believe that, and my self-esteem has built and built and now I don’t look at the negative. You know, people have helped me and talked to me about don’t focus and don’t dwell on the negative, just dwell on moving forward in your life. So, and like I say, I have to commend CSOSA for allowing me to speak on a radio podcast show, and I have to commend you and thank you Mother Cooper, not Reverend Cooper, but Mother Cooper for walking with me. This journey has not been easy. She knows the majority of my lifestyle and what has gone on with me during the course of my time in the community, and I can’t thank her enough for what she has done, and last, what I would like to say, even though I am no longer on a supervised parole or probation, I still want to volunteer my time in helping ex-offenders that come out of prison, and if that means mentoring or going different places and talking to an individual and letting them see that, you know, it is real that you can make it out.

Len Sipes: And I find that it is not unusual in terms of a lot of people who come out of the prison system who made good, they want to volunteer their time, they want to give back, and I find that to be interesting, and that’s a fairly common experience. Paul Tranthan, first of all, congratulations, you are off of our supervision. We are no longer holding you back. You are now a free and complete person. You have had a miraculous journey, and I’m so happy, tickled pink, that you have made this journey. Congratulations to you. And Reverend Yvonne Cooper, faith based counselor and connected with the Allan Chapel AME Church, Yvonne, thank you for being there, for Paul and for the other offenders.

Reverend Yvonne Cooper: Thank you, Lennie.

Len Sipes: Ladies and Gentleman, this is DC Public Safety, and my name is Leonard Sipes. I’m your host. Again, if you need to contact us, it’s www.media.csosa.gov or just go ahead on your internet search engine and search for DC Public Safety. I want to wish everybody a very pleasant day.

[Audio Ends]

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