A staple of late night TV and grindhouse movie theaters is the "women in prison" flick. The shower scenes are swell, the matrons are sadistic, but problem is that there is no spanking. Well, I say let's fix that.
They came for her just after the lockdown that was ordered because of the riot in the laundry. Two beefy matrons opened her cell and grabbed Constance Bright, one on each elbow. “Warden wants to see you”, was all the explanation she was given before they marched her off, and none too gently either. She could hear some disturbing murmurs.
“She’s gonna get it now….Lordy me…”. There were whispers, vague suggestive mumblings through closed doors that she heard as they roughly frog marched her down the hall of the dorm-like housing unit of the Tennessee State Correctional facility for women known as Falls Creek.
Connie heard them but she wasn’t worried. In fact she wore a half smile as if she and she alone were privy to some secret, and didn’t care about the ominous chatter. She wasn’t worried because, in fact, she was an undercover investigator for the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation. She had needed to see Warden Hopkins and Ned Baines, her control officer, to report that she was close to a breakthrough in the case. The fight in the yard had given her the opportunity. Nell Cloony, the inmate that she needed to befriend, got into a shoving match with Maude Jones, a rival. Nell had been getting the worst of it until Connie had stepped in and shoved her away. The resulting melee brought guards running, and in the scuffle Connie swung an elbow that accidentally connected with the jaw of one of the matrons. It may have broken teeth because the matron fell to the ground howling in pain. It was worth it. Before they separated the combatants, Nell looked Connie in the eye and whispered, “Thanks, sweetie. You’re ok.”
It had been tough as a “new fish” for Connie to be accepted and trusted. She was young and cute, an innocent looking girl with dark hair and looks that were vaguely reminiscent of a young Elizabeth Taylor. She had tried to get close to Nell, but the older woman had been suspicious. Connie had some information that Nell knew how the drugs were getting in and how they were being used. She thought Nell might be close to the other mystery as well. There was a criminal enterprise being run from within prison walls, but what was the nature of the crime ring that used the prison as a base? If she could gain Nell’s confidence, she might be able to break the case. Only the Warden, his assistant Nadine Leffert, and Connie’s boss, Baines, were in on the operation. Warden Hopkins suspected that some of the matrons were part of the network. What they had needed was a covert operative on the inside.
Connie had always wanted to be an investigator. Having a college degree and having gone through the police academy she had thought that she would work her way up to detective in no time. It helped that she was pretty. She had dark hair styled in curls that framed a round attractive face and big brown eyes. But it was 1955 and modern as the times were, women were still relegated to the back office and paperwork. So she had landed a job with the TBI, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation. TBI was responsible for the investigation of crimes that had an impact on the state and which were beyond the capabilities of local law enforcement. In this job she had thought, finally, a chance to be a detective.
And it had helped that she had become enamored of her chief, Ned Baines, a bachelor in his early forties. Connie herself was much younger. She was 23. But Ned was handsome, smart, ambitious, and he liked Connie. The romance had simmered for a time, but things now looked like they were moving in a more serious direction. Ned was smart enough to keep it under wraps. After all, this was 1955 and she was his subordinate.
Ned had thought she was smart as well as attractive and he had taken an instant liking to her. She was short, cute and had quite a figure. She favored tight skirts in the office and most male heads swiveled when she walked by to view her hips twitching sensuously from side to side. So Ned had been seriously attracted to her and the pair had started dating shortly after she had come to work. But now, as delightful as she was, this new investigation had fired her up to pester Ned about working on it as an investigator. Her idea was crazy and dangerous. She had floated the idea of going in as an undercover investigator. “I could pose as an inmate,” argued Connie, “then I could see what was going on.” She knew that if she pulled this off, she would be promoted to investigator—where the action was.
Ned had been given the job of investigating Falls Creek, the women’s penitentiary. There were rumors of a thriving drug trade inside the prison and worse. Some racket was being run through the prison, but its exact nature was unknown. There were rumors that matrons there had been bribed and that powerful crime interests were keenly interested in the criminal enterprise being conducted. There were also rumors of the involvement of a powerful local judge. The whole mess stunk. But Ned was determined that there was no way his new girlfriend was going to be allowed to go in undercover. It was preposterous.
“The answer, Connie, is no.” She had folded her arms and stamped her foot, but Ned was adamant. “As your boss, Connie, I’m telling you it won’t happen.” Things were a bit frosty after that, at least for a while.
Ned had started by interviewing Warden Earl Hopkins. Hopkins had been at Falls Creek for only two years, replacing Clint Ramsey who had been bumped upstairs to deputy chief of corrections. Ned had been impressed with the man. Hopkins had been brought in as a reformer who would set the prison on a course to fulfill what he saw as its main mission, rehabilitation. But there were powerful forces at work opposing that modern view. Those were mainly the rank and file at the prison. For now, strict discipline was still the rule at Falls Creek.
It was at the meeting with Hopkins, his deputy warden Nadine Leffert, Clint Ramsey, deputy chief of corrections for the state, and Bill Brosnan, Ned’s boss, that things had gone off the rails. Connie had pestered him to let her sit in. He did need someone to take notes, so he had given in, much to his regret. They had begun by brainstorming ideas as to how to retrieve intelligence inside the prison.
“The usual stool pigeons have all gone silent,” complained Hopkins.
“It’s true,” said Nadine. “Our usual sources are keeping their mouths shut.”
Then Connie spoke up. “I have an idea,” she said.
Ned did not like Connie jumping in, not one little bit. He had to head this off at the pass. “Miss Bright, could you go and get us some coffee?” asked Ned in a reasonable tone of voice. Connie knew what he was doing. He was trying to cut her out. She shoved her chair back and flounced into the kitchen, seething, while the two TBI men, Nadine Leffert and Hopkins’ boss, Clint Ramsey, continued to talk.
Connie was furious at having been dismissed to get coffee like some waitress in a diner. I’ll show them coffee, she thought. She came back with a tray but then disrupted the meeting by slamming the coffee pot and cups down on the conference table. The pot tipped over. Coffee was everywhere.
“What the hell, Connie?” sputtered Ned, as they all fumbled to wipe up the hot liquid.
“If I have to toss coffee all over the room to get your attention, I’ll do it,” she fumed. She addressed the others. “The only way you can find out what is going on inside Falls Creek is to have someone inside---and I can do it.”
Everyone just stopped and stared at her for a moment.
“I could pose as an inmate, be one of the prisoners. We could make up a story like I passed bad checks or something.”
For a moment nobody spoke. Then Ramsey spoke up. “But you’re just a girl….it’s too dangerous.” Everyone talked at once. But after a minute, Nadine said thoughtfully, “You know, I think, uh, Connie may be on to something. We really don’t have a chance without eyes and ears on the inside. It might work.” Hopkins didn’t like it, but grudgingly agreed that they needed inside intelligence.
Then to Ned’s dismay, Bill Brosnan agreed. “Perhaps Connie can learn something. I understand your concern Ned, but Connie is a trained police officer,” said Brosnan.
Yeah, thought Ned, and a rookie and a spoiled brat who is determined to get her way. But Ned felt trapped. He had to go along with this scheme.
Later, after the meeting had broken up, Ned took Connie home.
“Just what did you think you were doing today,” He said hotly, as they stood in her apartment. “You spilled coffee all over the table on purpose because no one was listening to you? I let you in on that meeting to take notes, Connie, not to run this investigation.”
“It’s a good idea and you know it, Ned,” she said trying to cool him off. Then she tossed her head and sniffed, “Besides you were all ignoring me. I had to get your attention. Plus, they agreed with me.”
Ned looked at her hard for a moment. Inwardly Connie squirmed. He had a glare in his eye that she did not like. “Well, that sure got everyone’s attention, Connie. Reminded me of a child throwing a tantrum. And so…” he said, rolling up his sleeves. Connie became alarmed.
“What are you doing Ned, darling?” she quavered. Ned had a look of steely determination.
“Well,” said Ned coolly, “I don’t like temper tantrums in a six year old and I like them even less in my employees. And, it seems my girlfriend has thrown a big one and behaved rather childishly. That won’t happen again, will it Connie?”
“Uh, no Ned….look I’m sorry about the coffee,” she said nervously.
“Well that’s good,” said Ned, advancing, “but, I guess it is up to me to insure that it does not happen again.” Before Connie could react Ned grasped Connie’s wrist and tugged her toward the couch. Seating himself, he pulled Connie face down across his lap, unmindful of her sputtering protests and frantic wriggling. She shrieked, “No, Ned! Don’t you dare!” But he ignored her protests and pulled up her skirt to reveal a very shapely bottom clad in black silk panties and framed by a black garter belt and stockings. She realized with a shock that her boyfriend and boss meant to give her a spanking!
“Connie, we are going to have new understanding,” he said, and raised his palm. Connie felt a hard splat! as Ned’s hand connected with her vulnerable fanny. Then he smacked her cute behind a few more times. It stung!
“Yeow! No!” Smack! Slap! Splat! Ned began to lay spank after spank on Connie’s well upholstered seat.
Connie squealed, “Ow! Ow! Ned! Stop!” She kicked frantically but Ned had her in a tight grip. The spanks continued to rain down methodically causing her ripe bottom cheeks to bounce. Then Ned paused. Connie thought he had stopped, and tried to rise, but Ned said, “Oh, no, Connie. We’re not done just yet.” He slipped his fingers into the waistband of her panties.
“Don’t you dare, Ned Baines!” she shrieked, but it was too late. Ned pulled the panties down to her knees, baring her bottom. He stopped for a moment to admire the shapely globes, now bearing what looked like red handprints. Then he resumed the humiliating smacking. This time the crack of his palm was sharper and the spanks stung more. Connie tried to squirm out of his grip, but he had her pinned across his knee. Ned spanked steadily, and for the next several minutes the apartment rang out with the percussive sounds of his hard palm smacking Connie’s soft girlish bottom and Connie’s resulting cries. Connie’s delectable bottom cheeks danced and wobbled as Ned’s hard hand struck time after time. She wriggled and squirmed under the volley of brisk spanks laid on by Ned, and he observed that her bottom was taking on a red glow. She was now yelping with every sharp smack.
“Ned! Ow! Please darling! Yow!” yelled Connie. But Ned just continued to pepper his girlfriend’s wriggling backside with brisk spanks. When she finally pleaded for forgiveness, Ned figured she had readjusted her attitude and he stopped.
“”Now,” he said. “No more childish outbursts at work—or anywhere else, understand?” Then he let her up.
Connie stood up and tried to rub the sting out of her bottom. She tearfully nodded. She should have been mad. Ned had spanked her bare bottom like she was a ten year old. The problem was that she was terribly sexually aroused. The spanking had done it. She did not know how or why, but Ned’s treatment of her had turned into a wildcat. She took Ned to her bedroom and shoved him back onto the bed. He watched in amazement as she stripped off her clothes for him, leaving only her garter belt and stockings. Those would not get in the way, anyway, she thought as she mounted him as he lay on his back. They made love repeatedly until the wee hours.
Warden Hopkins was impressed with Connie, and he had to admit, her idea made sense. So had Ned’s boss. So they made a plan. Later at a meeting with Baines and Hopkins they laid it out for Connie.
“Look Connie, we’ll give this two weeks—that’s all. Only I and the warden and his assistant will know. We’ll process you in just like any other inmate, assign you a cell. It won’t be pleasant, you understand. You just keep your head down, girl, and listen. Don’t put yourself in any situations that could get you hurt. Are we clear?”
Connie nodded. “Yes, sir. I’ll listen and watch.”
A protocol was established in the event that she had information and needed to see the warden. Hopkins or Leffert did a daily walk through and Connie would position a cup with the handle pointed at the door so he would see it and send for her. Ned privately gave her another protocol. “Not even Hopkins knows this. If things get out of hand play sick. Go to the infirmary and ask for the head nurse, Maxine Travers, got it? Then you can give her a note. It will get to me. She is my cousin.”
So she had gone in.
Now, however, she was being escorted to the warden’s office in the wake of the riot. The detail was met by a senior matron, one Louise Scruggs. Scruggs was feared by many of the inmates and for good reason. Her tough attitude on discipline and her willingness to impose it made many an inmate watch her step when Scruggs was around.
“Who is this?” asked Hopkins as she was ushered into his office. He pretended that Connie was just another inmate.
“This is inmate Bright, warden. She was in on that laundry riot and she attacked one of my staff who was trying to break it up. Busted her lip and maybe knocked some teeth loose.”
“Is this true, inmate Bright? Did you hit a staff person?” asked Hopkins quietly.
Connie shifted uncomfortably. The warden was on her side but something about his demeanor made her nervous. I guess I have to play my role, she thought, and he has to play his.
“Answer the warden,” snapped Nadine Leffert.
“Well, er, yes, but I was just trying to help Nell and she jumped on me…I got confused and…it was an accident!”
“Confused was it? Well you punched one of my guards, little miss Bright and, by God, you are gonna pay now. You know what the punishment is for hitting a matron? Well I’ll tell you, little missy, it’s a good hard….”
Hopkins held up his palm. “Stop, Matron Scruggs. We’ll deal with this in the proper way. Leave us for now. I’ll send for you when I’ve decided how to deal with inmate Bright here. Right now I want to find out about this riot. Get any other staff who witnessed this altercation. Bring them here. Nadine and I will question this inmate.”
Scruggs said, “Yes, sir,” turned and left. Hopkins gestured for Connie to sit down.
He waited until Scruggs had left the office. “Why on earth did you do this?” said Hopkins, hands in the air.
Ned Baines strolled in from a side office. “We told you keep your head down, to just observe, and now you hit a guard? Good God, Connie!”
“They weren’t talking to me, Ned, er, Mr. Baines, warden; I had to do something so Nell Cloony would trust me as one of them. I thought if I did something tough they’d take me into the gang. I think there is a shipment of pills coming in and I think Nell is involved but I need to get closer to her.”
“You might get your wish, girl,” said Nadine.
“Why, what do you mean?” asked Connie nervously. They were all staring at her with worried frowns on their faces.
“Everyone knows you hit poor June Doherty. Knocked teeth loose,” began Nadine. “They probably admire you for that, especially Nell. None of them like Doherty. They know you are here now and they expect the warden to hand you over to Scruggs for punishment.”
“W-What punishment?” Connie’s voice quivered.
Nadine continued, “The penalty for hitting a guard around here is a date with Black Betty. Always has been. All the inmates know about her.”
Now Connie experienced a cold knot of fear in her stomach. “B-Black Betty?”
“A 2 foot long 3 inch wide razor strop, Miss Bright. Administered by the senior matron and her crew. That would be Scruggs.”
Connie was panicked. A razor strap! My God it was outrageous, barbaric. To be whipped with a strap. Ned had spanked her, but this…
“But Mr. Baines, warden, you can’t let them. I work for you. I’m not a prisoner.” Ned just looked at her and shook his head. This is what happens, he thought.
“N—er, Mr Baines?” Connie looked hopefully at her boyfriend. But inwardly she knew. She couldn’t spill those beans and neither would he.
Baines and Hopkins looked at each other. Ned sighed.
It was Hopkins who pointed out the obvious. “But Connie, you are a prisoner, and as a prisoner you brought this on yourself. And look, if you get off scot free what are they going to think? They will smell a rat. Nell and everybody else expects that Scruggs is going to carry out the sentence which will be corporal punishment. They all know it. It is what happens around here. If that doesn’t happen they will know something’s up. You said you were close to solving this case, but if you come back to that cell block without a mark on you, they won’t trust you, they will think that something is fishy.”
Connie could only sit back and acknowledge the awful logic of it all. You hit a guard, you got punished. Hopkins and Nadine Leffert couldn’t tell Scruggs, because she and everyone on her staff was a potential suspect. To keep her cover the warden had to treat her like any other inmate who disobeyed the rules and got out of line. She could either call it off now or…no she had to go through with it. It was the only way she’d get to be an investigator. She had to take what they were going to dish out.
“I can be there, Connie, to make sure Scruggs stays within the rules.”
“What are they going to do? And when?” Connie asked in a shaky voice. She was now afraid.
“Procedure is, I’m going to call Scruggs in and the other matrons and get what happened on the record. Then I’ll have to tell Scruggs she’s authorized to administer corporal punishment. She’ll escort you to the infirmary so the doc can look you over, make sure you can take it. Then she and her crew will take you to the basement under admin. That’s where the punishment room is. They’ll strap you to the bench. It’s twelve licks, Connie, and it’s ah…well…”
“On the bare bottom, Miss Bright.” This last was added by Nadine Leffert who was not afraid to impart this last bit of information that Hopkins was having difficulty with. It wasn’t surprising. Connie Bright was a very pretty girl with a curvy figure and the image of her bent over for a strapping on her bare behind was clearly present in the minds of the two men who were reluctant to describe it to her.
Oh my God, she thought. There was no way out. Connie gulped and said in a quiet but quavering voice, “I guess I have to do it, then.”
Baines and Hopkins said nothing. They looked at each other, avoiding Connie’s gaze.
Hopkins reached over, punched the intercom. “Call in Matron Scruggs. Nadine, get a guard to escort Miss Bright to holding while we interview Scruggs.”
Nadine took Connie’s arm. “Come with me, Miss Bright.” As they walked out Nadine said, “Look. I know this will be hard. Be brave. Don’t tense up.” She gave her a rueful smile. “Try to think on something positive. Good luck.”
Back inside Hopkins interviewed Matron Scruggs who confirmed that it was Bright who caused the injury during the melee. One after another the guards who were present were called in. They all verified what Matron Scruggs had said. The warden made notes on a pad.
“One of my guards was hurt,” said Matron Scruggs, complaining. “I can’t have that. This needs to be nipped in the bud.”
The warden frowned. “I don’t like it, but in this case I agree. She is hereby sentenced to corporal punishment. The usual for this offense, 12 strokes. You are to take a detail, Matron and carry it out. You know what to do.”
Connie waited in an anteroom outside the warden’s office. This was awful, she thought. How did I get into this mess? She practically jumped out of her skin when the intercom buzzed and she heard it say, “Escort inmate Bright back in.” The guard took her arm and marched her back into the office. Matron Scruggs was there now and she had a satisfied smile on her face.
Hopkins addressed Connie, his face a stern mask. “Inmate Bright, I’ve heard the evidence and you leave me no choice. You struck a matron.”
“B-but warden, I didn’t mean to…”
“That’s why riots and fights are forbidden, inmate Bright,” he said. “I’m sentencing you to corporal punishment for this fracas. You’re going to learn to obey the rules, inmate Bright.” He turned to Mrs. Scruggs. “Twelve strokes, matron. See that punishment is carried out. Mrs. Leffert will witness.”
Louise Scruggs’ face broke out in a wide smile. “With pleasure, Warden.” She took Connie Bright by the arm. “Let’s go Bright. Time to warm that shapely little fanny of yours.”
First they took her to the infirmary. The prison’s doctor, an elderly man everyone called Doc Jenkins listened to her heart with a stethoscope and pronounced her fit to receive punishment.
They hustled Connie along, down the corridor to a locked door. A matron unlocked it and they led her down some stairs. When they got to the bottom someone flipped on some lights. Connie gasped. In the middle of the large room was a bench. From the side it looked like a shallow “A”. Connie could see there were cuffs at either end and leather belts with buckles at several points along the side.
“Well Bright, here we are,” said Matron Scruggs. “This is our little spankin’ bench and it’s time for your little spankin’, so get those clothes off.”
“M-my clothes off?”
“Everything,” said Scruggs smugly.
Oh God, this wasn’t happening, thought Connie. She undid the buttons on the simple blue prison dress and slipped it up over her head. Underneath the inmates wore only a slip, bra and panties. She doffed the slip, unhooked her bra and her breasts popped free. The last veil to her modesty was her panties. Inwardly groaning she hooked her thumbs in the elastic and slipped them down. “Very nice,” said Scruggs as she viewed Connie from the rear. “Looks like I have something to work with here.”
“Let’s just do this, Matron Scruggs,” said Nadine Leffert, clearly annoyed with Scruggs vengeful attitude.
“Put her on the bench,” Scruggs instructed her staff. The two beefy matrons placed her face down on the bench and cuffed her wrists and ankles. A strap was buckled across the small of her back and another across the back of her knees. Her bare bottom was pushed up by the apex of the bench to be the highest point of her body. She felt horribly vulnerable.
Connie’s eyes followed Scruggs as she strode over to the wall and unhooked a strip of black leather that hung on a nail. It was Black Betty, the supple razor strop fastened to a wooden handle. Connie gulped in fear as Scruggs swung it slowly back and forth testing its heft. The matron approached the bench, the strap swinging loosely at her side. She handled it with ease as if it was something she did every day.
Nadine Leffert said, “You may proceed Matron Scruggs. Twelve strokes.”
Scruggs smiled and lifted the strap so that it hung over her shoulder. Connie gritted her teeth. She lifted the strap with her arm and swung it in a straight downward arc. There was a whine followed by a loud splat! and Connie’s buttocks rippled with the impact. A band of fire like nothing she’d ever felt scorched her bottom cheeks.
“Yoww….ahhh!” Connie yelled. Omigod! The strap stung like fire.
“That’s one,” said Nadine.
Scruggs lifted the strap again. Swishh….whack! The sound exploded and Connie screamed in pain. It took her breath away. The sting. Like a hot fire lit on her backside. I can’t take this, she thought, panicked.
“Two,” said Leffert. She didn’t like these disciplinary strappings, but she had to admit, fear of that strap kept a lot of these girls in line. Inwardly she winced at the sharp slap of the strap as it impacted Connie Bright’s bottom. She’s a brave kid, though Nadine. God, that must hurt. As the strap hit, her bottom cheeks would flatten out, then spring back with a wobble and Connie would wail.
Matron Scruggs knew how to give a thorough strapping. She’d wait for a moment until the poor prisoner would stop screaming, then she’d heft the strap again and swing it in a swift downward arc to impact the buttocks right at the crown of the cheeks. Connie’s bottom wobbled with each harsh impact, and it did not take long for her whole bottom to acquire a bright red hue. Connie was stunned by how painful this was. Ned’s spanking had been a playful patting by comparison. Now she knew what real punishment was like.
Connie could only writhe helplessly as Scruggs took her stance, lifted the strap over her shoulder and brought it down with a resounding crack that made Connie’s bottom cheeks quiver. Her bottom felt like a swollen mass of flame. The large room rang with the loud cracks of the prison strap and Connie’s frantic mewling for the several agonizing minutes that it took Matron Scruggs to deliver all twelve searing strokes.
“That’s twelve, let her up,” said Leffert after the last lick of the strap had stung Connie’s bottom. She could hardly stand, but they propped her up.
Scruggs said, “Let that be a lesson to you, Bright. You hit one of my officers again and you’ll be back down here for another dose.” She swung the vicious strap at her side like she’d be happy to use it some more.
“Take her to the infirmary. She can be back in population tomorrow,” said Nadine. The two big matrons hustled her off.
To be continued...