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Kenosha County Eye

Racine County Sheriff’s Office Investigating Death At Sturtevant Prison

Racine Correctional Institution Sturtevant
(Photo by Kevin Mathewson, Kenosha County Eye)

Kenosha County Eye was tipped off today that there was a death at Racine Correctional Institution in Sturtevant. The prison is a part of Governor Tony Evers’ (D) state-wide Department of Corrections. KCE reached out to the Racine County Sheriff’s Office to confirm the tip.

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Racine County Sheriff’s Office Lieutenant Michael Luell

A spokesman for the Sheriff’s office, Lieutenant Michael Luell confirmed that “the Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigations Bureau is investigating a death at the Wisconsin Department of Corrections Facility, Racine Correctional Institute, in the Village of Sturtevant. RCI staff is cooperating fully in the investigation. The investigation is on going and I cannot comment further on the facts of the case.”

KCE was told that an inmate died and there was “use of force” by RCI staff. Drugs are also thought to have possibly contributed to the death.

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KCE has also reached out to the Wisconsin DOC for comment, and spokesman John Beard told us there was a death at the facility, but could not comment further. RCI has come under scrutiny lately for a series of misconduct allegations leading to two arrests and possible a third to come shortly.

Jacqueline Heidt

On August 29, 2022 a high-ranking employee at RCI, Jacqueline Heidt was charged with 22 felonies for having sex with an inmate, Travis D. Jones many times, and providing him with contraband.

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Convicted Murderer Lorenzo Guyton Paroled By Governor Evers (D)

On November 14, 1991, Lorenzo Guyton robbed and murdered James Mallett in the City of Milwaukee. He was convicted and went to prison. Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers (D) let him free on September 24, 2021. He then allegedly robbed a Goodwill store at gun-point, located at 6055 North 91st Street in Milwaukee on February 19, 2022. On February 27, 2022 he allegedly robbed a Subway located at 1807 East locust Street in Milwaukee. The gun he used, a Hi-Point, .45 caliber pistol had the serial number obliterated according to the federal indictment. He was charged by Milwaukee DA John Chisholm. Chisholm’s office dropped the charges after the federal government indicted him. His parole was revoked and he was sent back to prison. He allegedly tried to escape on October 30, 2022. He made it over one fence, and when he touched the second fence, he got electrocuted and rendered himself unconscious. According to a source, staff ignored an alarm and it took a great deal of time before his escape attempt was noticed. He was charged with attempted escape.

Corrections Program Supervisor Michelle Bones

On or around December 20, 2022 another high-ranking employee of RCI, Michelle Bones, was placed on administrative leave after allegedly being accused of having a sexual relationship with an inmate. Wisconsin DOC confirmed she was placed on leave but wouldn’t comment further.

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Warden Jason Wells

RCI is ran by Warden Jason Wells. Over all of theses incidents, we have reached out to him. He never answered any of our questions, but instead asked us to not contact him anymore. We reached out to him today becuase that is our right. It is also his right to ignore this bad behavior at his prison. We also reached out to the DOC Secretary’s office about Warden Wells’ track records and they too declined comment.

Racine Correctional Institution
(Photo by Kevin Mathewson, Kenosha County Eye)


  • Kevin Mathewson

    Kevin Mathewson is a disciple of Christ, husband and a father to two wonderful children. Mathewson was born and raised in Lake County, IL and worked as a police & fire dispatcher from 2005 to 2010 in Round Lake Beach, IL. Mathewson moved to Kenosha County in 2006, later being elected to the position of Alderman of the 8th District in 2012 and 2016. Mathewson is a private investigator, security contractor, journalist, and photographer. He enjoys spending time with his family, watching movies, camping and boating. His favorite amendment is the second, followed closely by the first. He loves his country and community.


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21 Responses

  1. As much as I despise Governor Evers, I don’t see what he has to do with the story other than being brought up several times and having his picture put in it.

    1. He has everything to do with all of the misconduct at RCI. He is the chief executive of the state of Wisconsin and the Department of corrections. He decides who gets to be Warden and who doesn’t get to be Warden he decides who gets paroled and who does not get paroled. The buck stops with him

      1. The rank and file staff are doing their best to keep a sinking ship afloat. The blame must go to upper management. The Deputy Warden Melman is the only upper management at the prison on a consistent basis. The other 2 should sit on a bar stool and make decisions. Oh wait maybe they do…

      2. Tony Evers is not the chief executive of the DOC. Secretary Kevin Carr is. Tony Evers does not appoint our Wardens, Secretary Carr does. Tony Evers does not decide who gets paroled, the Wisconsin Parole Commission does. You can say the buck stops with Evers, but you do not get to claim that he is directly involved with either of the two mentioned duties because that is completely false.

      3. Governor Evers doesn’t pick the Wardens, DOC Secretary Karr does. The Governor selects his Secretaries, and they administer their Department.

    2. Did you not read the article?

      Evers let a murderer out of prison, not to mention the jackass has done nothing with those running the prison, where 2 of his staff have had sexual relations with prisoners and one of them also providing contraband to the prisoner.

      How do you not see anything wrong with this?

  2. I’ve never seen such incompetent leadership. Warden not so Wells and his Girl McPutin are certainly 2 stooges who no doubt should be removed from their positions immediately. Instead it was a blueshirt who was for the Heidt dirty deed.

  3. And don’t forget the clown with the spray on tan called Bacon. And oh yeah the sleeping Supervisor Jones. The list goes on and on of classless puppets.

    1. It is interesting that you called out a few supervisors and the “classless puppets”. I assume you work there and have had disagreements with these folks about one thing or another. Or simply “heard” something from someone. Did you have the courage to go to any of these people with your concerns? Or did you just sit on your post and gossip?

      What excludes you from “classless puppets” category… what contributions have you made that make RCI a better place to work? What have you done to improve the work for your peers? What have you done that makes you an expert on the management of prisons or prison personnel? I wonder what category you see yourself in?

      You attack with name calling and no examples. Sad since it appears you had something to say but ended up saying nothing at all.

  4. This reporting feels a little lazy to me. Your headline details a current investigation that is under way surrounding the death of an incarcerated person. And yet, there is little you can report on that because it is under review so you “throw in” other incidents that are not even remotely connected. Maybe you should have waited until the investigation is concluded before making this your headline. Who knows, maybe there was some staff misconduct, failure by leadership, or they find that nothing was done incorrectly and that the death, while tragic, was no one’s fault. But don’t you think you owe it to your readers and those involved to at least wait until you know what actually happened???

    If you want to report about what you feel is a lack of leadership or failure to lead at RCI, maybe you could have written a separate article about that and included your snippets on incidents that have happened to support your thesis. You could reach out to current and former RCI staff and get their opinions. Would that not make for a better article? Is that not what professional, investigative reporters do?

    Even if you disagree with the findings of the investigations or you think someone is covering for someone, you could look into incidents yourself via public record request and then write your story.

    This article seems more like a “hit piece” than actual reporting for the sake of sharing news/information. Do better.

    1. It sounds like the Kenosha News is a better fit for you. They believe what they are told with little exception. There is one journalist there, Daniel Gaitan who investigates, but as a whole they don’t. I do. If yo want fluff pieces, you won’t find them here. Good luck

      1. I don’t need fluff, just some facts to back up your story. I am all for transparency and holding folks accountable when and where it is warranted. Based on the headline of your article, I thought it was going to be about the investigation into the death of an incarcerated person, but it turned out to be several “mini articles” without many facts.

        I look forward to seeing future articles, with updated information, about this from you as your investigation unfolds. Have a great day.

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