A Priest in Hell: Gangs, Murderers and Snitching in a California Jail

A Priest in Hell: Gangs, Murderers and Snitching in a California Jail

by Randall Radic
     
 


“Living in jail is like living in a foreign country. The customs and culture are different, almost alien, and so is the language.” A Priest in Hell is the compelling true story of life in the U.S. prison system. The book takes fodder for popular reality shows (like Cops) to a new level, giving the reader a frighteningly real sense of the tastes, sounds… See more details below

Overview


“Living in jail is like living in a foreign country. The customs and culture are different, almost alien, and so is the language.” A Priest in Hell is the compelling true story of life in the U.S. prison system. The book takes fodder for popular reality shows (like Cops) to a new level, giving the reader a frighteningly real sense of the tastes, sounds, smells, culture and lifestyle of jail. On November 5, 2005, Randall Radic was arrested and charged with ten felonies. Desperation for a monied lifestyle led Radic, a pastor in the northern California community of Ripon, to first mortgage the home provided to him by his church, before selling off the church itself. His crime is exposed when a large bank deposit catches the attention of the authorities. Radic is subsequently convicted of embezzlement, forgery, and fraud, and he spends six months in a California jail before a plea bargain facilitates his release. At 54, Radic is well above the average age of the prison population, and his background as a priest makes him both a target and a confidante within the prison walls. Through the book, Radic introduces the stories of several of his fellow inmates, detailing their crimes, cases, and struggles. He eventually earns his plea bargain by sharing confessions of a fellow inmate with the district attorney. Radic considers his time in jail Dante’s version of Hell. This is the gritty, painful reality of crime and consequence.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

Former pastor Radic's story is a simple one: craving more wealth than his clerical salary can offer, Radic embezzles funds from his church and lives the high life on the fraudulently gotten funds. His sins catch up with him and he is arrested, prosecuted and jailed in Northern California; he's eventually released after serving only a brief span of his time because he snitches on a fellow inmate. Radic's cliché-ridden account lacks passion, sincerity or conviction-in fact, Radic writes in the language and style of third-rate true-crime books. The book is filled with stereotypical gangbangers, murderers and criminals, and Radic's reflections on his own fears and concerns aren't convincing since he never portrays himself as someone for whom we should feel any pity or sorrow. In the end, when he gets out of jail, Radic is cavalier, almost as if nothing has happened for which he is sorry or contrite. (May)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781550228694
Publisher:
ECW Press
Publication date:
04/01/2009
Pages:
288
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.90(d)

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