Born and raised in Port Alberni, Earl Andersen is a former Oakalla correctional officer who wrote Hard Place to Do Time: The Story of Oakalla Prison, 1912-1991 (Hillpoint Publishing, 1993; Gordon Press, 2000). This history of the Lower Mainland Regional Correctional Centre popularly known as Oakalla provides inside stories about escapes, riots and hangings within B.C.'s largest prison, holding up to 1,200 inmates at a time. It reveals that more than 600 prisoners received plastic surgery to improve their appearance at the facility in the 1950s and 1960s. More than 850 prisoners escaped during Oakalla's 79-year history; 44 prisoners were 'hanged by the neck until dead'. In 1990, Earl Andersen became a Vancouver police constable.

[BCBW 2003] "Crime"