Tweets while in furlough land screenwriter Roger Avary (Pulp Fiction) back in regular old jail

The web has been buzzing with the odd discovery that Pulp Fiction co-screenwriter Roger Avary was apparently tweeting while serving his sentence in a work furlough program for a fatal car crash. The LA Times now reports that the furlough deal is off, and that Avary was placed back in a regular old jail on Thanksgiving day, presumably because of his tweets. They included details of cavity searches and drug deals witnessed at the furlough facility. His last tweet claimed the "rollup" to jail was punishment for "exercising First Amendment rights."


  1. When I saw that Avary had made his tweets “private” the other day, I figured that someone had seen ’em and had gotten pissed. I couldn’t be bothered to sign up to twitter and “friend” him or whatever so I wasn’t sure if that was the case or not …but obviously it was.

    While the tweets were public I thought they were quite interesting. Not glamorous, just revealing.

    1. Like the right to communicate with the outside world? Prisoners can make phone calls, write letters and receive visitors. Unless they are considered a threat to the outside world or running some kind of criminal enterprise why would that communication be considered a threat?

      Also Considering the rather public nature of twitter it would have been rather simple for the authorities to monitor his posts for anything countermanding the terms of his imprisonment.

      I think we need to hear more from the roughly 3 million people in the US population, not less. And an eloquent writer talking about the realities of incarceration seems a tiny bit of light to come out of this whole dark episode.

    2. I, for one, am quite unclear on what those lost rights are exactly. Freedom of movement is an obvious one but for the rest it is a blurry mix of everything the system can get away with and that is a whole damned lot.

  2. I think its the fact that tweets can be seen by a large group of anonymous sources is what the prison doesn’t like. A phone call can be traced, a letter intercepted, and a visitor registered. A tweet could hold a coded message that could be seen by unknown persons at unknown locations (and discovering who saw them while possible would take more resources than it takes to ban prisoners from tweeting in the first place).

    1. In principle, yes. But given the context of Avery’s tweets, it’s hard to believe that this was the impetus behind the facility’s maneuvers.

  3. I have to admit – I would not follow his tweets nor does it bother me that he can no longer tweet. He caused the death of a person through drunk driving. As I understand it, until his rollup he never spent time in jail and a year is a very short sentence for such a crime.

    If I were the relatives of the victim I would be furious that he was on a work furlough program to start with.

  4. Avery did a terrible, stupid thing, but he’s hardly a threat to society. Take away his license and give him 10 years community service, but locking him up in a full security prison is a waste of money and time. How does putting him in full prison lock up help anyone? It won’t bring the person he killed back, it can’t possibly give the family closure, and I don’t feel any safer now that he’s behind bars. Seems like a knee jerk reaction.

    1. Hardly a threat to society? I think the family of the victim would beg to differ. Taking away his license is no guarantee the moron won’t go out and do exactly the same thing again, judging by how many cases we see of people driving drunk with suspended/revoked licenses. He got a slap on the wrist, in a *furlough* program. He’s going to whine about his first amended right? How about all of the rights he denied his victim from enjoying?

      Honestly, a year in jail for being killing another person, no matter what the circumstances, is nothing. He’ll have the rest of his life to capitalize on the whole thing, writing screenplays about life in jail and how hard the life of a top Hollywood screenwriter is who was locked up just because he killed some nobody.

      1. Man, this thirst for vengeance mentality must be tiring.

        Here are some facts. Avary was responsible for the death of his friend. He, by all accounts, took a turn too fast after having too many drinks. He was injured, along with the other passengers (his wife and the victims) and his friend was killed. He didn’t fight the case, in fact, he pled out pretty much instantly, copping to it and saving the people of California a lot of money proving the obvious. He also paid for a lawyer to expedite his insurance company paying out to the victim’s family plus settling with them privately for a very large sum. No, money doesn’t bring back his friend, but all these steps combined show a hell of a lot of contrition for a single, stupid act. Oh, and he’s also paying for his own incarceration costs.

        I learned all this from 2 articles. I’m sure the judge was privy to a lot more, including the hundreds of character statements made for Avary by notables from across the globe. The guy made an awful, awful decision to drive while intoxicated. The notion that he needs to spend years in jail to understand that is more about your need to see him punished than any kind of actual justice.

        I’d rather that bunk be open should someone who truly needs to be out of the world for a while need it.

    2. Seriously? Wow, tell that to the next person that dies in a drunk driving accident because the driver knew the worst punishment he could get was community service.

      In a perfect world, a drunk driver would lose their license for 5 years for a first offense, for life for a second offense. And jailtime– at least a year– for a second offense. You injure someone, you go to jail for 5 years. Now that will get drunk drivers off the road and make the highways safer for all.

  5. lolbrandon…. killing someone while DUI is the very definition of a threat to society. He killed someone — he’s paying some debt to society — and hopefully to the survivors.

    Giving up tweeting is minor in light of what he did. If he’s an alcoholic and unrepentant then he’ll get out of jail and drive DUI again. His next stop will be big boy prison where he’ll get to play Marcellus of his attitude doesn’t shape up. Whether or not that’s a waste of money (and it may well be) I’ve seen a lot of DUI deaths in my career — they kill a lot more people than murderers every year — the social costs of DUI are nearly as high as the cost of jailing the DUI manslaughters.


    1. he’s paying some debt to society

      Being in prison would actually incur more debt to society, since we would be supporting him.

  6. I think it’s pretty clear the Avary is a self-involved, self-aggrandizing prick who seems not at all remorseful that his actions caused the death of one person and the serious injury to another. His tweets suggest some type of strange dissociative condition, where he’s the character in one of his screenplays. The man has issues.

  7. Pretty standard practice– You agree to waive many rights in a furlough program, and turning off or confiscating cell phones is a common practice. So is agreeing not to interact with people on the “outside”, follow all instructions of the supervising officer, no drugs, alcohol, smoking, etc. If you get busted, you go finish the time, possibly plus some for breaking the contract with the police agency. Tgh sht, sshl.
    — Voice of Experience.

  8. I’m sure the judge was privy to a lot more, including the hundreds of character statements made for Avary by notables from across the globe.

    After witnessing the parade of notables coming to Roman Polanski’s defense, it’s pretty clear that celebrities will come to each others’ defense regardless of the facts of the case… it’s like the Thin Blue Line of cops defending each other no matter what.

  9. Indeed, #16. Because intoxicated individuals will surely become responsible at the prospect of stiffer punishments.

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