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Guy Locked Up For 19 Years Explains What Trying To Play D&D In Prison Was Like

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Guy Locked Up For 19 Years Explains What Trying To Play D&D In Prison Was Like

We’ve all heard about the hardships of prison. The gang culture, the isolation, and the terrible diet and boredom - but prisons banning games like Dungeons & Dragons was not on our list of things to be concerned about. 


Jesse Crosson was a troubled teen. By 18, he was a self-confessed alcoholic and cocaine user, who committed a robbery with three friends in order to support his drug habit. A week later he got in a fight, shooting and wounding two men. He was arrested and while his friends received sentences from two to eight years, Crosson ended up with 32.

If you want to see how custom dice for Dungeons & Dragons are made, you can check out our video below.



Crosson received a pardon for the last stretch of his sentence, and was released after 19 years inside. Since then, he has used TikTok and other online platforms to spread his message about how to help reform prison and prisoners. 

In one of his recent videos he explains how, while it was technically allowed, his prison in Virginia found ways to ban games of D&D. First, they banned the books, then said the dice could be used for gambling. However, this didn’t stop the inmates who wanted to play.

The prisoners, who have a fair amount of free time, were so desperate to play they would copy down campaigns people read to them over the phone, or have family and friends copy out and send several pages of the campaigns by post


As for the dice, Crosson explained that they had to make their own. While making their own dice would be far too difficult, they instead made multi-sided spinners and would use that to determine a good or bad roll. It seems it takes a lot more commitment to play D&D in prison, but where there’s a will there’s a way.

Featured Image Credit: Wizards Of The Coast / Hazelight Studios / EA

Topics: Real Life

Georgina Young
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