First some notes:
I don’t know what 1966-1968 was like, but in the 1970s the documents on file clearly show that Paula was close to her mother.
Documents say that Paula has a scar on her right temple that has apparently been there since birth.
Documents show that Paula was a problem prisoner and acted up on many occasions:
There is a 5-16-67 handwritten letter from Paula in the folder requesting a transfer from the storeroom. She was having trouble with other inmates.
She was reprimanded on 7-31-68 for tearing up napkins and throwing them onto the floor and under the table.
On 8-16-68 she got into trouble for sneaking into another inmate’s room after lockdown. There had been rumors circulating that it had been going on.
11-26-68 – Complaint by another inmate of being bullied by Paula. (See scan below)
2-21-69 – Paula was quarantined for involving herself in a fight between two other girls. From the notes: “She is presently in quarantine for her own protection and as a result of this she is becoming bitter toward the institute and authority. When she is released from quarantine she should go on intensive counseling.”
April-May 1972 – Paula and Brenda Gray (also spelled Grey in the file) not following orders and acting up in the kitchen. (See scan below)
During incarceration Paula worked in the Laundry and Kitchen, participated in protestant Choir, and participated in special recreations of Arts and Crafts.
A fact sheet for her had this listed under Business Education: Typing, Business Machines, Filing, Basic English Review, Business Mathematics.
She got one year added to her time for her 1971 escape, and was allowed 95 days good time.
Paula went up for parole around late ’72-early ’73 with help from the group Ex-Cons for a Better Society. Her sponsor family was Mr. and Mrs. Eugene Bellman of Dayton, OH. The state of Indiana wrote to Ohio authorities to see if they would take Paula. Ohio denied the request.
Paula had her name changed to Paula Marie Van Fossan in February of 1973.
She was then paroled to and taken in by her father in February 1973.
A followup on her parole stated that she worked at a Waffle House for three months in 1973 before quitting because of pregnancy.
Here is a letter from Paula handwritten in pencil dated May 25, 1966 that is labeled Story. It is basically Paula telling her story of how she got to prison. She denies much of her involvement with Sylvia’s death and even has the gall to end the letter: “God bless Sylvia Marie Likens’ soul.” You’ve got to be f’n kidding me!
Note that this may have been written down by someone other than Paula. There is another handwritten letter from her that I have had copied (shown later) that has different handwriting.
May 25, 1966