By: Matt Pullle
In the 2009 legislative session, the GEO Group, a Florida-based private prison company, poured money into lobbying, selecting some of the priciest and best-connected hired guns in Austin. The reason was simple: The company had a lot of explaining to do before state lawmakers.
For at least three years now, the GEO Group has endured a rash of dangerous, embarrassing episodes that call into question the outfit’s ability to run prisons and jails. The state shut down one of its facilities, citing filthy conditions, while two riots broke out at its prison in West Texas. Then in April, a high court upheld a massive judgment against the GEO Group after an inmate was fatally beaten at another one of its prisons.