(Editor’s note: What follows is a transcription, accompanied by images of the original typed letter from Daniel Wozniak. Typos, grammatical errors, and misspellings found in the original are reproduced in the transcription.)
BEFORE EVERYONE GETS MAD…LET’S FACT CHECK A COUPLE THINGS
WHY AM I NOW HERE AT SALINAS VALLEY STATE PRISON?
To understand what’s happening a lesson in history is warranted. First when California VOTED to bring back the Death Penalty as a punishment it was done so by means of a Proposition [commonly known as the Briggs Initiative]; which was co-authored by a judge in Orange County! Poorly written…which essentially granted years of legal appeals for all the criminals sentenced to Death. The result of which has entirely clogged the judicial process; robbing the victims of THEIR due process, while you (the taxpayers) have now spent more than $4.5 BILLION DOLLARS ever since its implementation [with just 13 executions to show for!]
Skip ahead to 2016 where a measure which would essential try to ‘fix’ this Death Penalty Problem went on the ballot [PROP 62]. However, this failed to pass due to there being yet ANOTHER poorly written measure [PROP 66]: A bait-and-switch smoke screen giving the illusion of them speeding up the Death Penalty, but without so much as offing how they planned on solving the appellate ‘clog’; which meant the Courts simply shot it down. However, there were three other things that PROP 66 did:
(1) It lowered the cost for the taxpayers by not REQUIRING inmates to be HOUSED in the high-cost setting of San Quentin (Even though we all still have the same Death sentence). (2) It raised our restitution to 77% (from 55%) to pay off Victims Restitution Orders [Which mine is well over $65,000; ordered for ME to pay by no other than the FORMER Orange County District Attorney, Mr. Matt Murphy, himself!]. And (3) Since there was no way for inmates to pay this off, those who wanted to could volunteer to work in/at another prison (if they had no write ups in 5+ years) to pay off the OCDA & OC Court ordered restitution so the burden wouldn’t have to fall to our families and loved ones (who SHOULDN’T be left held responsible for our actions!)
So what am I now doing in Salinas Valley? Well, I’m doing exactly what California VOTED for me to do. So I feel it’s important to put ALL of this into context before everyone starts getting mad. Another thing to ask yourself is who sat on the planning commission making the decision and recommendations for how the Condemned Inmate Transfer Pilot Prog. [CTTPP] was to be implemented? Well, look no further than another fine wonderful person in Orange County – The Honorable Judge Prickett!
Now…I can see and understand why family members are angry (which I’m all but certain is VERY upsetting) but ever since I began this entire process I have continually asked what others would do if they found themselves in my position…and still to this day have not found one person who has been able to offer an answer that differs from the choices I continue to make on a daily basis. I have had and continue to welcome visits from my victims families anytime they wish to see me [I’m more than willing to sit down and allow them to vent ALL their anger, frustration and grief onto me. They more than deserve that right to do so]. I have accepted full responsibility for crimes which I can’t fathom ever being forgiven for! But don’t think for one minute that a day goes by that I don’t suffer living in a perpetual prolonged daily existence with the constant reminder that there’s absolutely NOTHING I can do to repair the damage my actions caused. I can only do the things which I fell CAN make some form of a meaningful difference.
Understand that nothing has REALLY changed. I’m still in-prison, I’m never leaving prison and…I will eventually face what I was, in fact, sentenced to and die within prison’s walls. This journey I have now found myself on really no longer has anything to do with me. My mind wrote myself off years ago. Living in prison and on Death Row for more than a decade leaves you faced with a daily paradox each and every morning: “If I’m already dead, why do I continue to wake up each day?”
Something you first need to forget about are those ridiculous notions that prison is filled with all these evil, hate-filled, dangerous and violent predators. (I blame Hollywood and those shock-factor (UN)True Crime TV Shows – which are comical in the way they stage and film all these embellished stereotypes). In REALITY…the prison population is just a bunch of guys who the world has abandoned; lost souls who have given up since they no longer believe they have any semblance of value whatsoever. They lack direction, think they have no purpose and think themselves to be all alone in this world. [Why wouldn’t they? Nobody truly cares whether they live or die!] Society no longer wants to deal with them so it’s simply easier and convenient for them to cast labels on them: “Scary, Dangerous, Evil, Monsters, etc.) Again, in REALITY.. being treated like that for so long takes most (if not ALL) fight out of them and leaves the majority in severe states of chronic depression
[You want a real “visual”?]: Tune in to any anti-depressant medication commercial. Do you ever see the sad guy in the bit all violent, angry and beating up everyone around him? NO! Most of the time you’ll be lucky if the dude has a reason to get out of bed in the morning. In all my time I’ve known just a couple of fatal attacks in prison; all of which were active gang members handling a ‘snitch’. Yet I’ve known (personally) AT LEAST 50 who have died either by suicide, overdose or medical issues. THIS the sad reality that prison truly is…THIS is the Real Problem that nobody is doing nearly enough about!
I hope you don’t think me to be insensitive to what people “out there” think of me. I’m sorry they feel that way and would gladly take on their burden if there were such a way to do so. Nobody’s quite figured out how to accomplish that yet (but please let me know if you do). At this point I don’t know how to change their warranted feeling for me. But for now I do find myself in a position of doing something unprecedented that’s never been done before. This PROP 66 action CITPP is complete uncharted territory (for everybody). It’s still prison!
I can only continue doing what I feel is the right thing to do at this point. The one thing that prison lacks is HOPE; especially for those who don’t truly deserve to even be here [NOT ME!]. To create it sometimes you have to be the change you want to see. It’s now become both the reason & answer to my daily paradox: To bring light where you only seem to find forgotten darkness. If it’s changing and making a difference in the lives of many others in here, whom the world has forgotten and wants nothing more to do with – I’M SORRY! But I do not see the value in ceasing what I’ve been doing for years now, if it now seems to upset some people who are ALWAYS going to hate me NO MATTER WHAT! People in here need to know that they should continue to have something to hope for and the more who know this fact, the better off this whole thing will be for everyone. I’m only one man and don’t presume to think I can fix this…but it continues to be a problem that exists and I’m in a position to actually do something about it! Making a difference is one of the few living amends I can offer for the damage I’ve caused.
(Editor’s note: End of transcription.)
I hope readers found this interesting. I promise to pass your substantive comments on to Daniel… as long as they are not just hopes for Daniel’s death and the like.
Addendum, September 14, 2021
I recently had direct contact with a reader who would like to remain anonymous but had some interesting and informative questions and comments about Daniel Wozniak’s letter to readers. This reader does have a strong personal connection to this case.
This person pointed out that Daniel used the word “fix” when discussing California’s Proposition 62, but the removal of the death penalty in California would not be a fix for the many people who support keeping the death penalty.
The anonymous commenter also wanted to make sure people understand that Proposition 66 was, overall, meant to speed up the legal process so death row inmates wouldn’t have years and years of appeals. Allowing DR inmates to transfer to other prisons so they could have jobs is actually just “cherry picking” from the less important point of the proposition.
The reader also wondered why death row inmates were moved from San Quentin to be able to work, but didn’t already have jobs set up before even leaving DR? They asked, “It is true that Daniel still has not been assigned a job at Salinas Valley State Prison, but he is enjoying the benefits of not sitting on death row?”
What irked the anonymous reader the most was Daniel’s comment that he has “accepted full responsibility” for his crimes. According to the reader, “It’s obvious that Daniel has not been honest with the police about the involvement of other people in the murders of Sam Herr and Julie Kibuishi. And until Daniel comes completely clean about all the details of the killings and who was involved – he has no right to claim he’s accepted full responsibility.”
24 thoughts on “Daniel Wozniak’s Open Letter to Readers”
I support moving death row inmates into general populations, as long as they have no write-ups. It is still prison, but they can be productive in some way while they’re on the planet.
NOTHING, absolutely NOTHING about prisoners is ‘productive’. They are a bunch of emotional and spiritual toddlers. Narcissistic mental midgets (like Daniel Wozniak) with nothing but self-worship and ego to propel them through existence. Prisoners run scams. They exist for it, and Wozniak is running one on the gullible person who has this website, the stupid, woke, CA DOC, and anyone else he can ‘work’.
If you want to know some actual TRUTH from the perspective of a non-phony, and unrepentant brutal murderer, read the book, True Story, by Michael Finkel. This book tells the true story of of another so-called ‘regular guy’ Christian Longo, who, despite the SAME advantages and hind-end kicks as the rest of us in this big world, managed to sin and sociopath his way into murder, evilness, and total destruction, same as Dan Wozniak.
The difference being: Prisoner Longo is not pretentious enough to feign responsibility or remorse, but instead regales his idol, author Finkel, with letters telling his amusing and adult-themed tales of passing the time in prison. Let me assure you, these prisoners entertain themselves. Prisoners still ‘experience life’ in its highs and lows; Something their murder victims can never do. Wozniak and Longo are pieces of human garbage who, for their own selfish reasons, stole LIFE and unforgivably took God’s gift forever from their innocent victims. Longo at least makes no illusions about it.
Keeping it real, Dan is a grotesque piece of murdering trash.
Absolutely! Scum of the earth and you can just tell by the tone of his letter, he’s arrogant AF as if he’s schooling readers. He’s gross!
I absolutely agree with your anonymous reader.
DW’s letter is self-serving and defensive. He doesn’t deserve a voice; he deserves to be silenced, just as he silenced two innocent people by killing them in cold blood.
What I just can’t get over with you and your blog is that you constantly give him a channel and platform where he gets to remain visible and only show sides that he thinks can make him look good. You’re doing him a huge favor and probably, inadvertently or not, helping his appeals.
Your writing has gotten a lot better over the years and some of the sickening fan-girl approach has dropped away, but the existence of this blog is still so utterly disrespectful of Julie and Sam.
It’s not a horrible thing to keep in touch with a prisoner. I used to work with re-entry, so I know. But it’s another thing entirely to enable a dangerous unrepentant criminal like DW to have touch with the outside world in such a way that he garners sympathy. Not to mention the sick gratification he probably gets when you tell him Eminem has a song lyric referencing him.
You wear Ear Hustle gear and want to be an advocate for the conditions for prisoners? That can be a noble cause if you’re focusing on people who were convicted on outdated racist legislation like mandatory sentencing and “three strike” laws, but to pour energy into and give help to a murderer who sees people as props and thinks he can rule the world like he’s a director on a stage…?
I’ve gone through your blog now. You basically want to be the next Ann Rule. I don’t think you have the journalistic integrity it would take to write a good book about this case. I hope it does not get published because DW doesn’t deserve the attention or sympathy. I still think you should be ashamed for keeping this blog and drawing sympathizers in. What you do in your own free time, deluding yourself into thinking DW is your friend, is your business, but sharing it here in an effort to humanize him to others is amoral.
I hope you take a good hard look at yourself and the years you’ve wasted on this, the hours you’ve spent on the phone when you could have been living your life, spending time with your children, etc.
Best course of action on your part is probably just to not read the blog…..
100%, well said! Also, what is he banging on about hope? These inmates have committed horrific crimes, and are sentenced to be executed. Being given a date for death, and being confined to a cell, really excludes hope. What are they hoping for? It’s done, game over. His victims families do not have hope their loved one will rise from the dead, or walk in the door. He has ripped that from them, but all of a sudden, wants to give people hope? “…those ridiculous notions that prison is filled with all these evil, hate-filled, dangerous and violent predators…” This is wholly innacurate. He is a dangerous and violent predetor, he has proven that with his actions. We can safely assume that those who did committ the crimes they are sentenced to death for, are at least one of those things. Just because they are now depressed, as he describes, and imprisioned, doesn’t make them any less of a dangerous and violent predetor. Just because they don’t have access to murdering innocent people, doesn’t make them not a violent, angry, dangerous, hate-filled person. They simply don’t have as much opportunity to commit crime and are depressed. It’s a circumstantial change in their actions. If you murder, you are violent and dangerous, here, there or anywhere. End of story.
You’re weird flirting with him and personal excitment/thrill you seem to get from interacting with him is completely inapporiate, bizarre, unhindered and unprofessional, but does keep me interested in reading it and seeing how crazy this whole thing is!
Right? The whole point of death row is that it’s the end. The end of life and the end of hope. His bullshit philosopical rhapsodizing honestly just makes me sick.
I think she’s still in love with Wozniak.
It’s been quite interesting reading all about Daniel’s situation and life in prison, as well as your interactions with him. I’m looking forward to the upcoming book and future posts about his daily life.
Do you plan to publish it in the future after his execution or prior to that? Has Daniel given you any suggestion as to what his wishes are for it?
Why is Dan at the California Medical Facility in Vacaville?
Haven’t been able to read everything, but wondering if anyone ever said how Dan got Sam’s PIN to make ATM withdrawals. This is a small detail, but it seems important to understand how Dan came to have that information from Sam.
I read that he had gone with Sam one day on errands and Sam stopped at the ATM. DW saw Sam put the pin in, over his shoulder, as well as the balance which was around $62,000.00. Hence the plan was started.
I do agree with the anonymous reader you quoted. Dan needs to be totally honest about what happened with himself and others. I’m glad he’s out of San Quintin. His desire to help others is a good mental sign. It reminds me of who he was before all this.
I must’ve missed something but was someone else involved? I thought it was just Dan
I have no sympathy for this man and I would never give him opportunity to be productive. He tried to hide away from the truth often. Who would believe anything he says would be meaningful. An eye for and eye. Shut him up.
your attempts to garner sympathy by telling me that other prisoners like you die only makes me happy. Fuck you. You killed someone for 2000$. Im gonna go get some fresh air. Hope it hurts.
Totally agree. They have been sentenced to death. If they choose to carry that out themselves, that’s fine, it’s the same result (except less cost to the tax payer, and also a benefit to them, as it is a defient act and one of the only things they have personal control over, and ends their assumed suffering of prison). I am wholly confused why the suicides are even noted. You’re on death row – that makes sense, so all good!
If Dan is so remorseful, why didn’t he plead guilty and save years of extra grief the victims family went through, not only waiting for the trial to start but also having to endure the trial. He should not be entitled to any appeals and his death sentence should be carried out asap.
Well said, Rob. There’s literally pages of “How comes…?” With that P.o.S, Wozniak, due to his compulsive lies and utter lack of comprehension of what he’s actually done… Only when he faces THE PENALTY HIS PEERS, the Jury, gave him – Will he EVER understand what he really did. Rid Cali of her human garbage. Bring the death penalty BACK to Cali.
Funny that only positive comments regarding one of the biggest pieces of human garbage in the state of Cali seem to go through.
Let’s try this:
Wozniak is a narcissist and a double murderer, as well as a phony, a sociopathic liar, and a lazy, self entitled BRAT that didn’t want to work! He belongs on Death Row. CA, get rid of your stupid woke politicians and get the ultimate penalty BACK!
Reading DW’s letter made me sick, especially saying how he welcomes the victims’ families to come visit him. He is not genuine at all in my opinion and he just wants to feed his need for attention by having the families visit him. He deserves nothing good in life for what he did and I hope he burns in hell.
If you are completely lacking in empathy, you cannot do a little bit of reflection and suddenly discover you now have empathy. That is hard-wired in your brain, You will lack empathy until the day you die. He is expressing remorse, because like most sociopaths, they have the need to be liked. He doesn’t want people to think he’s a monster.