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In Pictures: Bucking broncos at US jail rodeo
High security Louisiana prison promotes its annual rodeo for some of the state's most dangerous criminals.
Last updated: 09 May 2014 14:28
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Angola, Louisiana - The Angola rodeo in Louisiana - running since 1964 - is no ordinary affair. For a start, the event is held inside a high security prison with more than 6,000 inmates, and instead of watching trained cowboys and cowgirls, the participants are some of the state's most dangerous criminals.

"They want to put on a show," says Warden Burl Cain who considers the rodeo as part of a rehabilitation programme. "I would never do it, I'm afraid but they're not. They want to do it, so we let them do it."

Warden Cain has good reason to be afraid - some of the events, such as convict poker, are nothing short of dangerous. Inmates sit around a small plastic table in the rodeo ring when an enraged bull is released. The bull charges straight towards the four prisoners and the last man sitting wins $250. It is a game of raw nerves. Injuries are common, despite the fact that the men wear helmets and safety vests.

"It would be nice if we had training," says prisoner Kristopher Schoening who has been locked up at Angola for 15 years. "But it's also pretty awesome when you win the event and you ain't had no training!"

The rodeo, which takes place five times a year, drew in over $1m in revenue from ticket sales, along with the proceeds of selling snacks and furniture made by inmates. The funds go to "bapitst seminary classes, funerals for the inmates, educational programes, and maintenance for the prison's six chapels". 

Outside the arena, inmates are encouraged to set up their own arts and crafts stalls. They sell everything from fried coke (a congealed ball of solidified soda) to leather belts and stain glass windows. More than half the inmates are first-time offenders and up to 90 percent of them will die there, given Lousiana's harsh prison sentences. 


/Andy Gallacher/Al Jazeera
Angola Prison holds more than 6000 inmates making it one of the biggest maximum security jails in the US.


/Andy Gallacher/Al Jazeera

Many of Angola's inmates live for the rodeo because it is a chance to see the public and their families.



/Andy Gallacher/Al Jazeera
"Convict poker" pits the nerves of inmates against the power of a raging bull.


/Andy Gallacher/Al Jazeera

Injuries are commonplace but prison officials did not provide figures to Al Jazeera.



/Andy Gallacher/Al Jazeera

"Inmate pinball" winner Travis Johnson says he thanks Jesus for the rodeo. Many of the prison's programmes have a religious bent to them, and the warden is a firm Baptist.



/Andy Gallacher/Al Jazeera

This belt buckle belongs to inmate Travis Johnson who has won "inmate pinball" on more than one occasion.



/Andy Gallacher/Al Jazeera

The final event, "Guts and Glory", sees every prisoner battling it out to take a medallion from a bull's head.



/Andy Gallacher/Al Jazeera
Many of the prisoners grew up in urban areas and have no experience with livestock.


/Andy Gallacher/Al Jazeera

More traditional events like barrel racing are also part of the prison rodeo.




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images:
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captions:
Angola Prison holds more than 6000 inmates making it one of the biggest maximum security jails in the US.;*;

Many of Angola(***)s inmates live for the rodeo because it is a chance to see the public and their families.

;*;"Convict poker" pits the nerves of inmates against the power of a raging bull.;*;

Injuries are commonplace but prison officials did not provide figures to Al Jazeera.

;*;

"Inmate pinball" winner Travis Johnson says he thanks Jesus for the rodeo. Many of the prison(***)s programmes have a religious bent to them, and the warden is a firm Baptist.

;*;

This belt buckle belongs to inmate Travis Johnson who has won "inmate pinball" on more than one occasion.

;*;

The final event, "Guts and Glory", sees every prisoner battling it out to take a medallion from a bull(***)s head.

;*;Many of the prisoners grew up in urban areas and have no experience with livestock.;*;

More traditional events like barrel racing are also part of the prison rodeo.

Daylife ID:
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Photographer:
;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;
Image Source:
Andy Gallacher/Al Jazeera;*;Andy Gallacher/Al Jazeera;*;Andy Gallacher/Al Jazeera;*;Andy Gallacher/Al Jazeera;*;Andy Gallacher/Al Jazeera;*;Andy Gallacher/Al Jazeera;*;Andy Gallacher/Al Jazeera;*;Andy Gallacher/Al Jazeera;*;Andy Gallacher/Al Jazeera
Gallery Source:
Daylife
Daylife Raw Data:
Angola prison rodeohttp://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Angola_prison_rodeoen-ussupport@newscred.comUntitled Site10Fri, 09 May 2014 11:40:45 GMT http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Angola_prison_rodeo/slideshow/no-caption/2aac5a8897cfe3d8d38f5982dfd622d7

Angola Prison holds more than 6000 inmates making it one of the biggest maximum security jails in the US.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Angola_prison_rodeo/slideshow/no-caption/2aac5a8897cfe3d8d38f5982dfd622d7Andy Gallacher/Al Jazeera

Angola Prison holds more than 6000 inmates making it one of the biggest maximum security jails in the US.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Angola_prison_rodeo/slideshow/no-caption/ef6ffb530f1a88b7b59f249f4aa61c4f

For many of Angola's inmates, they live for the rodeo because it is a chance to see the public and their families.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Angola_prison_rodeo/slideshow/no-caption/ef6ffb530f1a88b7b59f249f4aa61c4fAndy Gallacher/Al Jazeera

For many of Angola's inmates, they live for the rodeo because it is a chance to see the public and their families.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Angola_prison_rodeo/slideshow/no-caption/a62bda5be1019077b2df466586b19850

"Convict poker" pits the nerves of inmates against the power of a raging bull.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Angola_prison_rodeo/slideshow/no-caption/a62bda5be1019077b2df466586b19850Andy Gallacher/Al Jazeera

"Convict poker" pits the nerves of inmates against the power of a raging bull.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Angola_prison_rodeo/slideshow/no-caption/ff2bdd6cc322f7825ea3b2179d7f4853

Injuries are commonplace but the officials did not give Al Jazeera any figures.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Angola_prison_rodeo/slideshow/no-caption/ff2bdd6cc322f7825ea3b2179d7f4853Andy Gallacher/Al Jazeera

Injuries are commonplace but the officials did not give Al Jazeera any figures.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Angola_prison_rodeo/slideshow/no-caption/a443f8275f87779dd6d01c8229fdfa6d

"Inmate pinball" winner Travis Johnson says he thanks Jesus for the rodeo. Many of the prison's programmes have a religious bent to them, and the warden is a firm Baptist.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Angola_prison_rodeo/slideshow/no-caption/a443f8275f87779dd6d01c8229fdfa6dAndy Gallacher/Al Jazeera

"Inmate pinball" winner Travis Johnson says he thanks Jesus for the rodeo. Many of the prison's programmes have a religious bent to them, and the warden is a firm Baptist.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Angola_prison_rodeo/slideshow/no-caption/d0fe061f95cde3da05bf74c07fc5e05c

This belt buckle belongs to inmate Travis Johnson who has won "inmate pinball" on more than one occasion. The event has prisoners each inside a hulahoop as a bull knocks them over. The last person standing in their hulahoop wins $250.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Angola_prison_rodeo/slideshow/no-caption/d0fe061f95cde3da05bf74c07fc5e05cAndy Gallacher/Al Jazeera

This belt buckle belongs to inmate Travis Johnson who has won "inmate pinball" on more than one occasion. The event has prisoners each inside a hulahoop as a bull knocks them over. The last person standing in their hulahoop wins $250.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Angola_prison_rodeo/slideshow/no-caption/8001f4e70cf34aefa4722efd68d170a3

The final event, "Guts and Glory", sees every prisoner battling it out to take a medallion from a bull's head.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Angola_prison_rodeo/slideshow/no-caption/8001f4e70cf34aefa4722efd68d170a3Andy Gallacher/Al Jazeera

The final event, "Guts and Glory", sees every prisoner battling it out to take a medallion from a bull's head.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Angola_prison_rodeo/slideshow/no-caption/fc18b80606dd7d3cb572933f16297d80

Many of the prisoners grew up in urban areas and have no experience with livestock.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Angola_prison_rodeo/slideshow/no-caption/fc18b80606dd7d3cb572933f16297d80Andy Gallacher/Al Jazeera

Many of the prisoners grew up in urban areas and have no experience with livestock.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Angola_prison_rodeo/slideshow/no-caption/c96535eb6913cd68f8c80f317e67728f

More traditional events like barrel racing are part of the prison rodeo.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Angola_prison_rodeo/slideshow/no-caption/c96535eb6913cd68f8c80f317e67728fAndy Gallacher/Al Jazeera

More traditional events like barrel racing are part of the prison rodeo.



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