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article imageReview: ‘Women Behind Bars’ Special

By Alexander Baron     Sep 27, 2013 in Entertainment
Trevor McDonald goes behind bars in America again, this time to visit a women's prison, and to speak to the much over-hyped Sarah Pender.
Previously, the laid back McDonald visited a men's prison; in this programme which is currently on ITV iplayer, he is escorted around Indiana Women's Prison and Rockville Correctional Facility where among others he speaks to Sarah Pender, who was convicted of a double murder, a crime which led to her being branded a female Charles Manson.
For those who have researched - or are old enough to remember - the crimes of the Manson "family", this claim will not deliver. Having said that, like Manson, Pender is an arch-manipulator, which is why she is currently in solitary confinement. In 2002, Pender was convicted of a double murder, which earned her a sentence of 110 years behind bars. Although she didn't actually pull the trigger, a lawyer McDonald speaks to here says she did "everything else". Unsurprisingly, Pender has her own website and even a Facebook page. It's difficult to believe, but Facebook was founded after her conviction.
Others we meet in this documentary are for the most part women who have taken a wrong turn or have had a bad start in life. One woman who has been behind bars for a long time will be released fairly shortly; she delivers the mail within the prison. Another, who looks and sounds quite daffy, has at least another year to serve for her part in violent street robberies. Surprisingly over 80% of the inmates are said to be mothers, something that bodes ill for the future of America.
There is another programme to follow shortly, and from a preview it does not appear to be more of the same.
More about sarah pender, Murder, trevor mcdonald
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