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Russell Smith (prisoner activist)
Russell Smith is a former U.S. federal prison inmate and continuing prison activist.
Smith had become an activist in behalf of rape victims in the prison setting through his prisoner organization, the National Gay Prisoners Coalition (NGPC).
Smith was confined in the Control Unit of the U.S. Penitentiary at Marion , Illinois, which he attributes to his efforts to avoid being a rape victim; this brought him to the attention of the Committee to Support the Marion Brothers and Barry Mehler .
Smith was raped after his release from the Control Unit, and charged with assault for what he claimed was self-defense against attempted further rapes. The International Committee to Free Russell Smith (ICFRS) was created by Mehler, Judy Miller , and David Kopp following this.
Smith was released from prison in 1980, and with the support of the ICFRS and the NGPC formed People Organized to Stop Rape of Imprisoned Persons (POSRIP). That organization was reorganized in the mid-1990s into Stop Prisoner Rape, Inc., but in the decade of the 2000s Smith revived POSRIP as a separate organization.
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