Exposed to violence, guns and gangs at an early age, Johnny had to grow up fast. During his sophomore year of high school, Johnny formed his own gang with his friends who had collectively decided this was their only option while living in the ghetto, and he was the formidable leader. When he was 17 years old, his son was born, and Johnny decided to change his life in order to protect his new family.

Despite Johnny’s efforts, his son got involved with the wrong crowd while living with his mother and is currently serving out a 12-year prison sentence. Johnny wants to join the program in order to show the other inmates—and his son—that gang life, drugs and jail does not need to define them, and it certainly does not dictate what their future needs to look like. He chose to leave gang life, and so can they. He wants to show his son that jail and prison is simply situational.

The Colonel believes that as a former gang member, Johnny would be able to integrate into the intimidating atmosphere of the male zones. He will be attuned to the criminal behavior that accompanies gang activity and give valuable feedback on how to address it.