Michael Alig: OH! Did I ever explain what a “shit room” is?
James St. James: No!
Michael: OK – in the visiting room or just in general, when they suspect you of having drugs inside of you, because that’s how a lot of people get drugs in here, they swallow them in the visiting room or shove it up their butt.
James: That’s hot.
Michael: I know. Now if they swallow them, it’s harder to find these drugs because it’s, you know, inside your stomach. So what they do, if they suspect you of this, they take you to a “shit room.” Now a shit room is an 8 x 8 seamless stainless-steel box, sort of like being in the back of a paddy wagon, so you can’t stash anything or drop anything, or hide anything behind anything, and you’re naked, and you have to sit there on a mat. All you have is a mat, and you’re naked (maybe they give you a hospital gown) and you sit there, under a spotlight, with a person standing in front of you, on the other side of the bars, watching you for 72 hours, until you shit THREE TIMES. And you have to shit three times clean. And you have to do it in a bowl. And they have to go through it with a fine tooth comb. Literally. They give you your meals in there and everything. And when you give them back the tray, they will go through your food, again with a fine tooth comb, literally picking through the mashed potatoes or the chicken bones or whatever, to make sure that you haven’t shit out whatever it is you’re hiding, or they think that you’re hiding inside and then passing it out.
Now my neighbor Izzy – this was at Southport – was put in the shit room five or six times. And he was a pro at beating the shit room. And what he would do is, he would shit the drugs out, maybe a bundle of dope, or some bags of dope, and then he would engage the officer in some kind of conversation or gossip about other officers or whatever, and meanwhile he would be unwrapping the dope and eating it and eating the paper, right out of his butt, or else if it’s in plastic, like ripping the plastic up into a million pieces, into little tiny, tiny pieces, mashing it up in his pasta or gravy or soup or whatever, or re-swallowing it. So there are all kinds of ways to get around the shit room.
Michael: It’s a pretty big deal. Everybody is afraid of going to the shit room, because you really have to be a hardened drug addict to make it through the shit room.
James: Have you ever had to go?
Michael: No, no, no. but it’s supposed to be just terrible. It’s really cold in there, and they do that on purpose. You’re cold and you’re naked and you’re there for three days. And you don’t get any property. You don’t get your deodorant or and you are just in there with no toilet. . . there’s no sink. . . there’s no nothing. It’s really awful. I hear.