One of the consequences of over two decades of “tough on crime” legislation has been the steady increase in elderly residents in our nation’s jails and prisons. A 2015 Human Rights Watch report notes that the number of prisoners above the age of 55 has increased threefold in less than a decade, and that many of those men and women will remain incarcerated well into their 70s and 80s—if they leave prison at all.
For Fred, a prisoner serving a 10-year sentence at the Maine State Prison in Warren, incarceration is an opportunity to improve himself.
"I knew right off the bat that when I was going away for a long time that I had to do something with myself while I was here," Fred says.
What advice would you give to a younger you? If you could give yourself a warning, or point a juvenile version of you in a particular direction, what would you say? Would it make a difference?
The question became painfully real to Trent Bell, an architectural photographer in Maine, when a longtime family friend was convicted of a crime and sentenced to over 30 years in prison.