Jimmy Tayoun, Prison Consultant

Jimmy Tayoun was a Philadelphia City Councilman who got busted for accepting bribes and concealing income from the IRS. As a result, he spent some time in a federal prison, but he used the experience to good advantage by penning a 64-page guide of practical advice for those on their way to prison, which was published upon his release in 1995. He titled it, Going To Prison? It seems like a book that deserves a place in any library of the weird. [Allegheny Times]

He also set up a 1-900 number to answer questions from "fearful first-timers," charging them $2.50 a minute to select from a menu of seven topics. In this way, according to wikipedia, he pioneered the profession of "prison consultant" (apparently he was the first to use the term), that being someone who "provides newly convicted criminals with advice on how to cope and survive in the unfamiliar surroundings of prison."

Jimmy's tips included these words of wisdom:
  • Bring a good amount of cash if you can.
  • Ask the custodial officer for a couple more razors, some more soap, and later for toothpaste. After a while you will learn where it is stored, check the door until you find it open, and help yourself — though never take too much since your lockers do get checked
  • See a dentist before serving time
  • Be wary of probation officers
  • Never snitch on another inmate or guard
  • Bring two pairs of eyeglasses, though "nothing fancy schmantzy"
  • Get a doctor's note to avoid being assigned a top bunk
  • Arrange private transportation to prison to avoid being handcuffed on the trip

     Posted By: Alex - Wed Apr 17, 2013
     Category: Jobs and Occupations | Prisons | 1990s

I'd swear I saw this title in a Loompanics catalog way back when.

I'm not sure why one would want to bring cash to a prison, however. Isn't the place full of thieves?
Posted by KDP on 04/17/13 at 03:32 PM
I was watching this documentary on scantly clad women in prison a couple of times once and they had their money in an account that they used at the canteen.
Posted by Expat47 in Athens, Greece on 04/18/13 at 12:14 AM
What a jackass this guy is. He tells people to steal in prison, that is a good way to get kept there longer.
Posted by Patty in Ohio, USA on 04/18/13 at 12:55 AM
I'd have thought the number one piece of advice was to be careful not to pick up the soap in the shower.
Posted by TheCannyScot in Atlanta, GA on 04/18/13 at 07:49 AM
Buy soap on a rope, its your only hope!
Buy preperation H, just in case!
Posted by Patty in Ohio, USA on 04/20/13 at 04:39 PM
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