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Ex-Officer at Ford County Jail admits he abused inmate

March 5, 2011
The News-Gazette

URBANA – A former Correctional Officer at the Ford County Jail has pleaded guilty to a felony charge, admitting that he sexually abused a female inmate in her cell.

Phillip S. Santefort, 41, who listed addresses in Paxton and Buckley, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court in Urbana on Feb. 10 to one count of sexual abuse of a person in official detention. The charge says Santefort engaged in a sexual act with a female inmate during cell checks in summer 2009.

Santefort faces up to 15 years in prison when sentenced by U.S. Chief District Judge Michael P. McCuskey on May 20.

Santefort, whose trial had been scheduled for March 28, remains free on a $10,000 unsecured bond. His attorney, Reino Lanto of Paxton, did not immediately return a message requesting comment Friday. The U.S. attorney's office in Urbana declined to comment.

A federal grand jury returned a one-count indictment against Santefort in October, following an investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice.

Santefort's employment as a correctional officer was terminated two weeks later. Santefort had been suspended with pay since June 8, after an eight-count lawsuit was filed, revealing allegations that he forced a female inmate to perform oral sex on three occasions.

In October, a federal judge agreed that the civil case would not be heard in U.S. District Court until the criminal case was resolved.

A status conference for the civil case is scheduled for March 31.

Santefort had a criminal record when he was hired as a courthouse security guard in August 2007 and later began working as a correctional officer at the Ford County Jail.

Santefort pleaded guilty in 2006 to misdemeanor theft – in a plea agreement in which four felony charges were dropped.

The charges alleged Santefort stole $26,000 in cash that had been seized from narcotics busts while he was employed with the Calumet City Police Department in suburban Chicago.

NC Jailer Charged With Having Sex With An Inmate
Burke County police have charged a Jail Officer with having sex with a female inmate several times in the past 14 months.

March 5, 2011

Burke County police have charged a jail officer with having sex with a female inmate several times in the past 14 months.

The Burke County Sheriff's Office said in a news release that 58-year-old Sergeant Thomas Edward Pearson was arrested Friday at the jail. Pearson was being held on $50,000 bail at a different detention center. He was scheduled for a court appearance Monday.

The News Herald of Morganton reported that Pearson resigned Friday.

Lieutenant Becky Weatherman says 32-year-old Alicia Camille Goode told investigators that Pearson gave her more freedoms in exchange for sex. Goode is awaiting trial on a murder charge.

Interim Jail Administrator Steve Whisenant says Pearson ran the jail at night. Whisenant says more security cameras will be added to try to prevent inapproriate contact between officers and prisoners.


Corrections Officers to check-out  It is my hope that if you are a Corrections Officer and you know damn well you are doing something illegal......STOP!

It is not worth it.  Please think about that.  You can't tell me you have nothing to lose.  The last thing I want to do is include YOUR news article to this page after your arrest. 

We tell our inmates all the time...."It's all about the choices we make in life".  Lets practice what we preach.
    Sergeant Sandvig 


Former Corrections Officer Gets 4 Years For Sex Crimes

March 4, 2011

A former Noble County Corrections Officer in Ohio has been sentenced to four years in prison for sex crimes.

Craig Tschappat pleaded guilty in February to one count of sexual battery and two counts of solicitation. At his sentencing hearing on Friday, Tschappat said, "I've always taken responsibility for my mistakes and this is no different."

The victim was not in court, but Tschappat apologized, saying he feels "indescribable shame and regret for his actions." He also said, "It just seems like mere words aren't adequate to convey the sorrow and remorse that I feel."

The charges stemmed from incidents in Belmont County years ago. After more than a decade of staying silent, the victim came forward in July, prompting an investigation that let to Tschappat's arrest.

"That's not unusual. In the majority of these cases, it takes some time for a victim to gather courage to come forward," Belmont County Prosecutor Chris Berhalter said.

Tschappat worked as a corrections officer for the Noble County Correctional Institution for 12 years and was placed on leave when the allegations came to light. He was fired in September and has been in the Belmont County Jail for 166 days.

On Friday, Tschappat's defense asked the court to consider house arrest, but Berhalter said the offenses were too serious and argued for jail time.

"We're always going to seek a sentence like that because we feel we have a duty to make sure that not only are these individuals held accountable for what they've done, which is send a clear message that this is not going to be tolerated," Berhalter said.

Because Tschappat did not receive the maximum sentence, he will be eligible for judicial release. He will be required to register as a tier 3 sex offender for the rest of his life.

Former Corrections Officer indicted

I bet his parents are damn proud of him!!  See you in a few years sir.  
                                         Sergeant Sandvig 

March 3, 2011
Nutley Sun

A grand jury has indicted a Nutley man in connection to an alleged ring that smuggled items into the Essex County Jail, the Essex County Prosecutor's Office reported this week.

Former corrections officer Joseph Mastriani, 30 at the time, has been charged with conspiracy, distribution of a controlled dangerous substance, dispensing a CDS within 500 feet of public property, and possession of an electronic device in a county correctional facility, according to prosecutor spokeswoman Kathy Carter.

If convicted, Mastriani could face up to 10 years in prison, Carter said. While each count carries a maximum 10-year sentence, it's likely the sentences would be carried out concurrently, if he is convicted, she said.

As previously reported, Jill Watral, 31, of Nutley, a former Cedar Grove special education teacher, was charged with two counts of conspiracy in the case.

Mastriani and Watral are free on bail, according to the prosecutor's office.

Mastriani and 12 others were arrested last July in what police dubbed Operation Jail Breach. Authorities allege the ring allowed inmates to obtain cell phones; narcotics such as heroin, marijuana and prescription drugs; and other banned contraband, bringing in as much as $1,000 weekly for Mastriani.

Also arrested in the sting was former corrections officer William Rupp of Bloomfield. Among those arrested were Almighty Latin King and Queen Nation gang members, according to authorities.

"They essentially sold their badges for a couple of dollars," said Acting Essex County Prosecutor Robert Laurino said of the corrections officers at the time of their arrests. A nine-year veteran guard, Mastriani brought the items into the prison hidden in a bag, Laurino claimed.

The ring came to the attention of officials after an internal investigation, Laurino said.

In July 2004, Mastriani was among six jail employees suspended for what was described as a "boxing match" between officers and inmates, reports indicated.


Jail Chief convicted of assaults

Yep...another BLACK EYE for the Corrections profession.  Good job sir!

                              Sergeant Sandvig 

March 4, 2011
Jim Salter

ST. LOUIS (AP) -- A former supervisor of a Missouri jail will likely go behind bars himself for assaulting two inmates and directing violent inmates to attack two others.
Former Washington County chief jailer Vernon G. Wilson, 57, was convicted Thursday in U.S. District Court of violating the civil rights of the four men. He was also convicted of two counts of lying to the FBI about his role in the attacks. Sentencing will be June 1, and Wilson could face up to 10 years in prison on the civil rights charges and five years on the charges of lying to the FBI.
"When Vernon Wilson goes to prison, he should not experience the same vulnerability he made his victims feel," said Dennis Baker, special agent in charge of the FBI office in St. Louis. "Fortunately, the vast majority of the men and women who swore to uphold the law are not like him."
Wilson's attorney, Burton Shostak, did not immediately respond to a phone message on Friday..
Evidence at the trial indicated that on two occasions in 2005, Wilson repeatedly struck inmates in the face, the force of his attacks so strong the inmates banged their heads into a concrete wall at the jail in Potosi, about 60 miles southwest of St. Louis.
On two other occasions that same year, Wilson placed non-violent inmates in a cell with violent inmates, including a murder suspect. Federal prosecutors said Wilson paid the violent inmates with cigarettes to attack the two inmates he considered troublemakers.
One of those inmates, Gary Gieselman, had been arrested on a bad check charge and was taken to the jail for what was expected to be a brief stay. He told The Associated Press that he and Wilson's daughter, who was also a jailer, exchanged words that her father overheard.
Gieselman was placed in a section of the jail referred to as the "rough tank," where he was attacked, suffering several broken bones in his face, and broken teeth. He was taken to a hospital, unconscious. He said the facial damage is permanent.
"The jury's verdict confirms that my civil rights were violated," Gieselman said in an e-mail on Friday. "While Vernon Wilson will face justice, I am still concerned that the practice of beating prisoners was allowed to continue for so long at the Washington County Jail. I do not understand why so many employees and officials stood by silently for so long."
Gieselman filed a civil lawsuit in September naming Wilson, Wilson's daughter, Valeria Wilson Jackson, Washington County and the inmates who attacked him.
A phone message seeking comment from Washington County Sheriff Andy Skiles was not returned. Skiles' office oversees the jail, but he was not sheriff in 2005 when the crimes occurred. The former sheriff, Kevin Shroeder, was not accused of wrongdoing.
Jackson, 26, pleaded guilty in July to one count of obstruction of justice for lying to the FBI about her role in the Gieselman beating. She is awaiting sentencing.

Jail Sergeant faces sex charge

Jail Sergeant????...I'm embarrassed for him.

March 4, 2011
Steve Lyttle

A Morganton man who was night sergeant at a jail in Burke County has been charged with having sex with an inmate, authorities say.

Thomas Edward Pearson, 58, was arrested Friday and charged with sexual activity by a custodian. In this case, the word "custodian" refers to Pearson's role as overseer at the facility. The charge is a felony, Burke County officials say.

Pearson has resigned his position at the Burke-Catawba Confinement Center, a jail facility in Morganton shared by Burke and Catawba counties.

According to the police report, Pearson is accused of having a sexual relationship for 14 months with Alicia Camille Goode, 32. Goode was jailed on murder charges, in connection with an August 2007 Burke County case in which a man was killed during what police described as a botched home invasion.

Pearson faces an initial court hearing Monday.

He is being held in the Caldwell County Jail, under $50,000 bond.

Merced Jail Officer accused of trying to smuggle meth to inmates

A more serious charge of trying to take drugs into facility added in arraignment.

A Correctional Officer accused of smuggling cigarettes for Merced County jail inmates now faces a more serious charge of trying to bring methamphetamine into the John Latorraca Correctional Center.

Anthony Sodini, 27, was arraigned in Merced County Superior Court on Tuesday on felony counts of attempting to smuggle a controlled substance and felony smuggling of a noncontrolled substance (cigarettes) into the jail.

Sodini pleaded not guilty to both charges, and his attorney says the case is based on weak statements from jailhouse informants.

If convicted, Sodini faces a maximum of five years in prison, according to Deputy District Attorney Bruce Gilbert. Gilbert said Sodini has no prior arrests. "We have more than enough evidence to prove that he committed those two offenses," Gilbert said.

On Feb. 8, Sodini was arrested by deputies with the Merced-Mariposa High-Intensity Drug Trafficking Area Task Force, after confidential sources tipped off detectives about the correctional officer's alleged activities.

At the time of his arrest, sheriff's officials said Sodini was suspected of smuggling tobacco to inmates at the jail. After the district attorney's office reviewed the sheriff's report, he was formally charged with also attempting to bring a controlled substance into the jail. According to the sheriff's report, confidential sources told detectives Sodini had been bringing methamphetamine, as well as tobacco, to inmates at the jail.

Heather Phillips, Sodini's Fresno-based attorney, said she was surprised by the two felony counts her client is facing. When Sodini was arrested last month, he'd been booked into the jail on one felony count of obstruction of justice and 10 infractions for allegedly bringing contraband (tobacco) into a correctional facility.

Phillips said she was surprised about the felony charge of attempting to smuggle a controlled substance into the jail because Sodini hadn't been booked on that allegation after his arrest.

She's reviewing the facts of the case. "He maintains his innocence of these charges," Phillips said.

Informants talk

The sheriff's report describes in detail how Sodini allegedly brought the illicit items into the jail.

Detectives first learned of the allegations from confidential informants in late January. One of the informants said Sodini brought tobacco and methamphetamine into the jail -- and had been using them as payment for an inmate to "take care of," another inmate who'd assaulted one of Sodini's relatives while out of custody, according to the sheriff's report.

Sodini had allowed an inmate to use his cell phone to order "drops," which Sodini would pick up from outside the jail and smuggle into the facility. He'd then distribute the items to inmates in the dorms.

The informant said the drops would happen "every couple of days," saying Sodini was "very open with the inmates and willing to bring contraband into the jail and he does it right out in the open and in front of the jail," according to the report.

The informant also told detectives a bag of meth, a glass pipe and a lighter were given to the inmate who was supposed to handle the retaliation against the man who'd assaulted Sodini's relative, according to the report. The informant also said inmates at the jail bragged about Sodini bringing the items into the jail, calling him their "mule."

Sting operation

The HIDTA Task Force initiated a sting operation after learning from an informant that an expected delivery of contraband was scheduled to happen the night of Feb. 8. The drop point was supposed to be on the south side of the jail by some trees, according to the report.

Detectives prepared a package containing four packs of Marlboro cigarettes. Inside the package, they also placed a small white packet containing salt, to imitate illegal narcotics. Around 6:30 p.m., a plainclothes detective walked to the south side of the jail and placed it near the tree line on the south side of the jail.

The detectives watched the area, and at 10:30 p.m. Sodini walked outside of the jail's south gate and went directly to the package. He picked up the package, looked around and walked back toward the jail.

As detectives moved in, Sodini allegedly became frightened and tossed the package over the wall of the facility (it was retrieved by deputies). He was placed in handcuffs and taken into custody, according to the report.

Some admissions

Under questioning, Sodini at first denied the allegations, but then said he knew it was wrong and had allowed the inmates to smoke cigarettes from the packages delivered to the facility, according to the report. He denied doing it at the direction of the inmates, saying he'd give some cigarettes to them and kept the others for himself. He also said the deliveries would also happen at the same spot, so he knew where to look.

Sodini told detectives he'd brought the packages into the jail more than 10 times. He denied bringing drugs into the jail, but acknowledged he didn't check every package -- so cell phones, drugs or other contraband could have been brought inside.

An inmate who was interviewed as part of the sheriff's investigation told detectives a single cigarette sells in the jail for $10.

When asked whether he had set up retaliation against an inmate who'd assaulted his relative, Sodini said he'd reported to supervisors that the inmate had been receiving preferential treatment, such as extra food and phone calls.

He was upset because nothing was being done about the preferential treatment. As a result, Sodini asked another inmate to make the life of the man who'd assaulted his relative "miserable." Although Sodini didn't give an explanation to detectives about what "miserable" meant, he said to another inmate it could "mean anything from beating to stabbing another inmate," according to the report.

Still, after detectives told Sodini it wasn't acceptable to use his position to settle a "personal occurrence," he acknowledged that he knew it was wrong, the report stated.

Allegations disputed

Phillips, Sodini's attorney, took issue with several parts of the sheriff's report. She also pointed out her client is only being charged with the allegations stemming from the sheriff's sting operation -- not the claims that he did it to retaliate against an inmate.

"It's completely false. He was not bringing in methamphetamine and was not bringing in (items) for some sort of a murder-for-hire plot. It's part of a really bad made-for-TV movie," Phillips said. "None of those things have been charged because there is no evidence to support them."

Phillips said much of the case is based on statements by jailhouse informants, who are anything but credible.

As for the alleged admissions Sodini did make to detectives, Phillips said she plans to listen to taped interviews that detectives conducted with her client and inmates at the jail. "I haven't listened to the tapes, so in regard to any alleged admissions that he's made, we're not going to make any specific statements," she said.

Still, Phillips pointed out it's not uncommon for drops to happen at the jail, and it's not uncommon for inmates to notify officers. "The fact that he picked up a package is not unusual and it's not criminal behavior," Phillips said. "I don't see any conceivable way that they are going to be able to show that he was smuggling anything in, when by their own admission he didn't know what was inside of the package."

The suspect is the son-in-law of sheriff's Sgt. Steve Sziraki and convicted embezzler Kimberly Sziraki. Kimberly Sziraki is serving seven years in state prison for embezzling $1.4 million from a Merced nut-processing plant.

Sodini remains on paid administrative leave from the sheriff's department and is free on bail. His next court hearing is scheduled for April 6.

Correctional Officer charged with bringing marijuana to prison

March 08, 2011
The Times News

A Caswell County Correctional Officer has been arrested on drug charges.

Tavaries Cordero Moore, 23, of Greensboro, is charged with possession of a controlled substance in a prison facility, aiding and abetting provision of drugs to an inmate, felony possession of marijuana and possession with intent to sell/deliver marijuana.

A press release from the Caswell County Sheriff’s Office says deputies were asked March 1 to help with a N.C. Department of Corrections investigation into possible drug possession by a Caswell Correctional Center employee. Investigators found 54.1 grams of marijuana “in a hidden drink compartment” before Moore was arrested.

His bond was set at $10,000.


Ex-Corrections Officer sentenced for taking bribes

March 8, 2011

Minneapolis (AP) — A former corrections officer has been sentenced after pleading guilty to accepting $5,000 in bribes from relatives of two inmates at the Federal Medical Center in Rochester.

Fifty-three-year-old Cheryl Wheeler of Wabasha was sentenced Tuesday to eight months in prison plus four months of home confinement. She also must perform 120 hours of community service.

Wheeler pleaded guilty last September to one count of bribery of a public official.

In her plea agreement, Wheeler admitted she demanded and received money from relatives of the inmates in exchange for giving the inmates tobacco. It happened from July 2009 through February 2010.

Former Washington County Jail Guard sentenced in inmate abuse case

March 10, 2011
Robert Patrick

ST. LOUIS • A former Guard at the Washington County Jail who used inmate "enforcers" to attack other prisoners was sentenced Thursday to five years probation and six months of house arrest.

Valeria Wilson Jackson, 26, could have faced 21 to 27 months in prison under federal sentencing guidelines, but was rewarded for her cooperation in the investigation. She waived indictment and pleaded guilty of obstructing justice last year and testified against her father, former jail boss Vernon Wilson, in his trial this month.

Jackson, in her plea and at trial, said that Wilson used a violent inmate awaiting trial on murder and arson charges to enforce discipline in the jail. Unruly or disruptive inmates were placed in the cell block with that inmate and others. Attackers were rewarded afterward with cigarettes.

Jackson also admitted that she placed a Jefferson County man, Gary Gieselman, in Mackley's cell block on Sept. 29, 2005, and sarcastically told inmates to "play nice" and "have fun," as a signal that the inmate "needed to be shut up," according to her plea.

Wilson found out that Gieselman had annoyed and insulted his daughter, entered the cell block and got into a "heated argument" with Gieselman, prosecutors said, giving "further encouragement" for an attack.

Gieselman was beaten so severely that he was rushed to a hospital.

During Thursday's hearing, U.S. District Judge E. Richard Webber said that Jackson's sentence may not appear to the public to be the appropriate punishment.

"That's O.K. because they will not fully understand the facts of this case," he explained, citing Jackson's cooperation and the "incredible amount of courage" it took to testify against her father.

Federal prosecutors also asked Webber to give Jackson a break, citing her cooperation.

Jackson will have to pay restitution to injured inmates and undergo a mental health evaluation and counseling for "issues. . . which may be post-traumatic stress disorder," Webber said.

Gieselman was in the courtroom for Jackson's sentencing Thursday, but spoke only to answer Webber, who asked if he was O.K. with the sentence.

Gieselman said in an interview after the hearing that he was "satisfied" with the sentence. He has filed a civil suit over the incident.

Jackson's lawyer, Scott Rosenblum, said, "There cannot be anything more difficult than a daughter who testifies against her father."

"At the end of the day, he was a bully. He got what he deserved and she got what she deserved," he said.

Wilson is scheduled to be sentenced on four civil rights charges and two counts of lying to the FBI on June 1.


Fired Sullivan Jail Captain charged with theft

24 years of employment....thrown away just like that.  Amazing.

                                                                         Sergeant Sandvig 

March 9, 2011
Claire Galofaro

The recently fired administrative captain of the Sullivan County Jail, accused of using her county-issued gas card to pump fuel into another woman’s car, has been charged with three counts of theft.

The clerk told police that a woman wearing a Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office uniform pulled a gold Chevy Impala with government tags up to pump No. 1 and got out, according to an affidavit filed Tuesday in Bristol General Sessions Court. Around the same time, a young, blond-haired woman parked a white Chevy Equinox on the opposite side of the pump. The clerk watched Delp activate the pump with a county-issued Fleet One gas card and start pumping fuel into her Impala, the affidavit states. Then she removed the pump from the Impala, walked around the pumping station and began putting fuel into the Equinox. In total, 13.617 gallons, worth $40.02, were pumped into the two cars, the affidavit states.

The Bristol, Tenn., police officer who responded previously worked for the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office, according to the affidavit. He watched the security footage and recognized Delp.

Another clerk at the gas station told him “that this was not the first incident of this nature,” the affidavit states.

She said that on Dec. 23, Delp pulled into pump No. 7 in the same Impala and the same blond woman in the white Equinox pulled in across the way, at pump No. 8, according to the affidavit. The same Fleet One card was used to start the pump and Delp put $20.11 of gas into the Equinox, it states.

The clerk said that several months before that incident, on Aug. 19, she also watched Delp use the Fleet One card to pump $34.22 in gas into the white Chevy Equinox.

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation “reviewed corresponding Fleet One receipts and Sullivan County Purchasing Department records of the aforementioned transactions which indicate significant discrepancies in miles per gallon and fuel tank holding capacities of vehicles involved in this incident.”

Delp worked for the Sheriff’s Office for 24 years, said LT. B.J. Richardson at the time of her termination. As the jail’s administrative captain, she oversaw the commissary, transportation, food service and work release programs.

The Sheriff’s Office spokesman, Capt. Keith Elton, declined to comment on the charges against her.

No one answered Wednesday at the Blountville phone number listed for Delp.

Delp was charged with three counts of theft less than $500, a Class A misdemeanor punishable by a year in jail and a $2,500 fine.


Jury: Rensselaer County Jail Guard guilty of beating inmate

Bexar Corrections Officer Indicted

DOJ: Raymond Quintero Violated Civil Rights Of 2 Jail Detainees

March 10, 2011

SAN ANTONIO -- According to the Department of Justice, a Bexar County corrections officer was charged on Thursday in a two-count federal indictment with violating the civil rights of two detainees.

The charges stem from two incidents -- on Oct. 8, 2007, and on May 31, 2009 -– in which Raymond Quintero, 33, of San Antonio, assaulted inmates at the Bexar County Detention Center, a Department of Justice spokesman said.

If convicted, Quintero faces maximum penalties of 10 years in prison on each of the civil rights charges.


Prison suspends implicated Guard

March 11, 2011
The Times Leader

WILKES-BARRE -- A Luzerne County  Prison Guard who was implicated, but not charged, in connection with a drug-smuggling operation within the county prison has been suspended pending further investigation, Warden Joseph Piazza said.

Cpl. Joseph Ciampi, a 21-year veteran at the prison, was suspended without pay on Friday, Warden Joseph Piazza said.

Ciampi was identified as one of the persons who purchased cocaine from Chris Walsh, a fellow prison guard who was among four people arrested Thursday by the state Office of Attorney General following a 13-month grand jury investigation.

Grand jury records released Thursday revealed that Ciampi testified before the grand jury in April that he had purchased cocaine from Walsh on several occasions between 2008 and 2009.

Ciampi, who began cooperating with authorities, also recorded a conversation between himself and Walsh in which Walsh coaches him on how he should testify before the grand jury, according to the documents.

Piazza said Friday he knew of the grand jury investigation but was not aware of Ciampi’s involvement in the case until Friday, when he read the grand jury report.

Former deputy warden Sam Hyder was also identified as a person who obtained drugs from one of the other four defendants, former nurse Kevin Warman, according to the report. Warman testified that he had supplied Hyder with 30 to 60 tablets per month of Xanax, an anti-anxiety medication, from 2007 to 2009.

Hyder has not been charged. His attorney, Peter Moses, on Thursday denied the allegations.

 By law, a state grand jury can recommend charges, but the actual charges are filed by a law enforcement agency, said Nils Hagen Frederiksen, spokesman for the Attorney General’s Office.

The grand jury did not recommend charges be filed against Ciampi or Hyder. Frederiksen said he could not say why the grand jury opted to make the recommendations it did.

“The only thing we can comment on is what the grand jury has recommended. At this time, the grand jury has recommended charges against the four individuals we arrested (Thursday),”

Frederiksen said. “If there is additional evidence developed or if additional information becomes available, we will pursue that.”

Charleston County Jail Guard accused of punching prisoner

March 12, 2011
David MacDougall

A female guard at the Charleston County jail is accused of punching a female prisoner in the face, authorities said Friday.

Repunzel Rivers, 35, of Elephant Road in Santee, is charged with third-degree assault and battery and misconduct in office, according to a news release from the State Law Enforcement Division.

She was arrested by SLED on Friday and appeared before Charleston County Magistrate Linda Lombard, who released her on a $11,092 personal recognizance bond.

According to the SLED arrest warrants, on Dec. 17, while working as a detention officer, Rivers repeatedly punched a female prisoner in the face while the prisoner was being booked.

The assault, which was captured on video, appeared to have taken place without an immediate need of self-defense, defense of others or to gain control of the suspect, according to the warrants.

The woman had been arrested by the Folly Beach Public Safety Department on an alcohol-related offense, said Maj. John Clark of the Charleston County Sheriff's Office.

According to the arrest warrants, the suspect suffered bruising to her left eye, temple and collarbone, as well as a cut to the inside of her lower lip and a swollen upper lip.

Rivers, who has been employed as a detention officer since 2003, is on administrative leave without pay, Clark said.

SLED was called in to investigate the case at the request of the Sheriff's Office.

Former Local Jail Guard Pleads Guilty to Having Sex With Inmates
A woman who used to be a guard at a local county jail pleaded guilty Thursday to charges stemming from sexual relationships with two male inmates.

WACO (March 10, 2011)--Former McLennan County jail guard Whitney Fleming, 27, pleaded guilty Thursday to having improper sexual relationships with two different male inmates.

The incidents happened on May 1, 2009 and July 1, 2009, prosecutors said.

State District Judge Matt Johnson ordered a pre-sentence investigation before formal sentencing.

The district attorney's office recommended probation in the case, but asked the judge to set any specific conditions of probation, which could include jail time or other requirements.

Readers comments

Posted by: SR. C
Location: Waco on Mar 11, 2011 at 02:10 PM

I don't know what really happenned, and I'll not read all of the comments. But I sure hope the prisoners did not have to look her in the face when this happenned!!

Posted by: BILL
Location: HEWITT on Mar 11, 2011 at 12:48 PM

These prisoners should be set free immediately for time severed and hope that no law suits arrise for the county for cruel and inhumane punishment! Talk about scared straight, let her go around to the schools and tell kids what can happen to them in jail.

Jailers Arrested For Smuggling Booze To Inmates

March 11, 2011

MANY -- Two Sabine Parish Sheriff’s Department jailers have been arrested on charges they smuggled whiskey to inmates at the parish jail.

Investigators said they suspect the jailers were bribed to smuggle alcohol into the Sabine Parish Detention Center on more than one occasion. Deputies Michael Wayne Carhee, 37, and Anthony Gary Bass, 26, have also been fired, Sheriff's Department officials said.

Sheriff's deputies said they began investigating after a fight last weekend in a section of the jail where trustees stay. Some of those involved in the fight were clearly drunk, authorities said.

"The fight started the investigation, which led to (other) jailers finding several intoxicated inmates in the trustee dorm," Detective David Self said.

Carhee was an 11-year veteran of the Sheriff's Department. Bass had worked there for a year and a half. Both men were booked into the parish jail and then released on $2,500 bond each.


Prison Guard arrested

March 14, 2011

WINTON, North Carolina – A Prison Guard found himself on the other side of the bars here last week.

Eric Lashawn Askew, 28 of Ahoskie, a Sergeant with Rivers Correctional Institute of Winton, was arrested by the Hertford County Sheriff’s Office on sexual assault charges.

Sheriff Juan Vaughan said Askew, who turned himself in on March 9, was charged with attempted second degree rape, a felony, sexual battery and assault on a female, both misdemeanors.

Vaughan said the alleged crimes took place against a female correctional officer at the private prison.

Askew was placed under a $25,000 secured bond and was released on the same day of his arrest. He made his first court appearance on Friday.

Sheriff Vaughan said officials at Rivers Correctional called his office to investigate the incident. HCSO Investigator John Joyner handled that task.

Hearing for Prison workers set

March 14, 2011

County officials will hold private hearings to determine what disciplinary action should be taken against three  Prison employees implicated in a recent drug ring arrest at the county prison.

The employees --- Jason Fierman, Chris Walsh and Cpl. Joseph Ciampi – will have an opportunity to answer questions and defend themselves through a Loudermill hearing, which is a formal procedure used by public employers when employees face termination or suspension, said Prison Warden Joseph Piazza.

Loudermill hearings give employees an opportunity to review evidence and respond to an employer’s claims against them, Piazza said after Monday’s prison board meeting.

In the meantime, all three employees remain suspended without pay, Piazza said.

Fierman and Walsh were arrested last week by the state Office of Attorney General after a 13-month grand jury investigation of drug activity at the prison.

Ciampi was not charged but was identified as one of the people who purchased cocaine from Walsh.

Grand jury records said Ciampi testified before the grand jury in April that he had purchased cocaine from Walsh on several occasions between 2008 and 2009.

Piazza said the Loudermill hearings have been scheduled for 2 p.m. today, and all three men have been invited to attend.

The county Prison Board will vote next month on any further disciplinary action that will be taken against the men, Piazza said.

The prison board also voted Monday to promote treatment coordinator Jennifer Lombardo to a new day reporting center director position. She will continue to receive $41,200 annually.

Piazza said five people were interviewed for the position, and the administration believed Lombardo would be the “best choice.”

“She’s really been the acting day reporting center director. She was there from the beginning, and she knows how the program operates and what we’re looking for,” Piazza said.

Corrections Officer charged in bong theft

March 15, 2011

Panama City -- Bay county Sheriff’s investigators say a shooting investigation that began last week ended with two additional arrests for burglary.

Investigators arrested 19-year-old Ryan Thomas Shaw and 15-year-old Lydia Amanda Cooper last Wednesday, alleging Cooper drove Shaw by the home, which he fired into.

But a third man, 23-year-old Tanner Morton was also questioned in the case. He was released while the other two were still held, and authorities believe that along with his friend, 24-year-old Gulf County Corrections Officer Seth Pfaff, Morton went to the home where Shaw and Cooper lived, and broke in, knowing the pair was in jail.

Authorities say the two stole a bong (smoking pipe) and some marijuana from the residence, after breaking a window to get in. However, neighbors saw the break in, and called the authorities.

Now, Morton is charged with burglary, and Pfaff is charged with principle to burglary.

Lawsuit Filed Against Jailer Accused of Sex Abuse

March 16, 2011

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A lawsuit has been scheduled against a former Dallas County Jail official accused of sexually abusing an incarcerated woman.

The woman is suing 60-year-old Kevin Hines and Dallas County for violations of equal protection and due process rights and for inflicting cruel and unusual punishment.

The woman alleges that Hines assaulted her three times on Dec. 6, 2008, when she was an inmate.

Hines, who resigned from the sheriff's department nearly two years ago, has pleaded not guilty of third-degree sexual abuse and sexual misconduct with an offender.

A plea hearing is scheduled for April 1.

The Des Moines Register reports that a civil trial is scheduled to begin May 7, 2012.

N.J. Corrections Officer admits trafficking 22 kilos of cocaine from Texas

March 16, 2011
Salvador Rizzo

Trenton, N.J. - A suspended State Corrections Officer pleaded guilty to trafficking 22 kilograms of cocaine from Texas to New Jersey, the Attorney General's Office announced today.

Eugene W. Braswell, 31, of Newark, was arrested in 2008 on charges that he and five accomplices transported drugs from out of state and sold them in northern New Jersey. Authorities said he and Delrese Hardy, 37, of East Orange, supervised the four other traffickers. All six defendants have pleaded guilty.

“This senior correction officer was living a corrupt double life, guarding prisoners for the state while moonlighting as a major drug trafficker,” said Attorney General Paula Dow.

Two of Braswell's accomplices, Walter S. Braden, 33, and Shuerod Walton, 39, both of East Orange, were arrested in Warren County as they were returning from Houston on July 12, 2008. Detectives had a warrant to search their van and seized 22 kilograms of cocaine hidden in the vehicle's roof panels. Twelve days later, law enforcement officials searched Braswell's home and found drug packaging materials, a revolver and $17,020 in cash.

The investigation by state authorities was launched after a 2007 shooting outside Braswell's home in which the corrections officer returned fire on Waliford Williams, 34, who died at the scene.

“Braswell’s involvement in a fatal shooting in Newark raised a red flag for detectives of the State Police and Division of Criminal Justice, who subsequently uncovered his narcotics network,” said Stephen Taylor, director of the Division of Criminal Justice. “All six defendants in this case now face lengthy prison sentences.”

Braswell, who was suspended without pay from his job as a senior corrections officer at Northern State Prison following his arrest, faces up to 20 years in prison and up to 12 1/2 years without possibility of parole. He will also lose his job and state pension.

Former Trumbull Corrections Officer Pleads to Drug Charges

March 16, 2011

A former Trumbull County Corrections Officer has pleaded guilty to several drug charges.

Sarah Graham entered the pleas to charges that she used deception to obtain a dangerous drug during a brief hearing Wednesday in Trumbull County Common Pleas Court.
Instead of facing prison time, she has been ordered to undergo drug addiction treatment.

Her attorney said she has already successfully completed one program.

Graham had worked with the department for four years.


Prison Officer allegedly tries to sneak in marijuana, tobacco

March 15, 2011
Wesley Brown

MAURY, N.C. — The nose of a drug-sniffing canine allegedly found more than an ounce of marijuana and bags of raw tobacco on a prison officer trying to sneak the goods into Maury Correctional Institution this weekend.

Edwin G. Edwards, 29, will make his first appearance in Greene County District Court Friday for felony charges of possession of a controlled substance on prison grounds and possession with intent to sell and distribute a controlled substance and misdemeanor charges of possession of drug paraphernalia and providing tobacco to an inmate.

Thanks to the astute pooch, officers recovered 37.5 grams of marijuana, five to six bags of tobacco and rolling papers from Edwards’ lunch bag and body shortly after 7 p.m. Sunday, said Capt. Daniel Hawkins, the arresting officer with the Greene County Sheriff’s Office.

Hawkins assisted officials with the N.C. Department of Corrections in a routine unannounced drug screening over the weekend at Maury Correctional Institution of all visitors, staff and vehicles entering the prison property, said Keith Acree, spokesman with the DOC.

“The dog hit on the marijuana when he entered facility and lined up in a row with everyone else to be searched,” Hawkins said of the arrest.

Edwards, a correctional officer at the state prison since June 2008, resigned Monday. He earned an annual salary of $28,484, Acree said.

“We do interdictions periodically as part of our strategy to keep drugs out of prison facilities,” Acree said.

Hawkins placed Edwards, of Greenville, in the Greene County Jail under a $10,000 secured bond. He has since posted bail.


Caught On Tape: Prison Guard beats suspect

Ummmm....doesn't look good to me.   Sergeant Sandvig

March 15, 2011 

Authorities at the Charleston County Sheriff's Office have released video of a Detention Officer repeatedly punching a female suspect in the face during a booking at the Charleston County Detention Center last December.


Woman says Jail Guard groped her

Filed lawsuit, pursuing sexual battery charges

March 16, 2011

NOBLE COUNTY, Ind. (WANE) - An Angola woman is suing the Noble County Jail and a former Guard after she said she was sexually assaulted while behind bars.

Holly Bertoia said the incident happened last June while she was serving time for a misdemeanor. She said former Jail Guard Jamey Waikele was always friendly with her, but one day he crossed the line. Bertoia told NewsChannel 15, Waikele got on the PA system and sent her a disturbing request.

"He asked me to play with myself in front of the camera so he could watch," said Bertoia.

The harassment, she said, didn't stop there. A few days later, she recalls, Waikele came to her cell and sexually assaulted her.

"He came to the door and he grabbed my breast... I was appalled. I was shocked. I didn't know what to think," she said. "It scared me. It made me feel violated. It just really made me feel bad about myself."

She said she wrote a complaint to a detective and even took a polygraph test to prove she wasn't lying.

NewsChannel 15 asked Sheriff Doug Harp (who was not the sheriff at the time of the alleged incident) about the case, but he would not comment, because of the pending lawsuit.

However, he had earlier told NewsChannel 15, Waikele was in fact put on administrative leave while officials investigated the allegation. Harp said about a week later, Waikele was fired for violating the jail's sexual misconduct policy.

NewsChannel 15 found out, Noble County guards go through background checks and training before ever walking into the cell. And because jail guards are not certified like police officers, if they violate any policies, there's nothing to be stripped besides their reputations.

Harp wanted to make clear that the guards working for him right now are doing the right thing.

"We've had a great track record here," said Harp. "We're real proud of our agency and the people who work here."

Bertoia said the jail never informed her of Waikele's termination and that she found out through another guard. She said she's speaking out now, because she wants to prevent it from happening again.

"How many girls has this actually happened to that didn't step forward?" she asked. "I want other people to realize this ain't right... It don't need to be happening in any jail."

Bertoia is seeking $50,000 in damages and plans on pursuing sexual battery charges against Waikele.

Corrections Officer shoots/kills husband while he was sleeping

Ocala woman calls 911, confesses to shooting husband

March 17, 2011

OCALA, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35) - A Marion County Corrections Officer reportedly called 911 on herself, after shooting her husband while he was sleeping, according to the Ocala Police Department.

"Around midnight last night, we received a 911 call in relation to a shooting that had just taken place," said Lt. Balken with the Ocala police department."

Police say when they arrived to the scene late Wednesday night, they found 52-year old Victor Puig laying in his bed with a gunshot would to the face and a 9mm handgun in the house.  His wife, Sylvia, reportedly surrendered and was arrested on the spot.

According to the arrest affidavit, Victor, a former corrections officer, appeared to have been sleeping on his back, with his head on a pillow and the covers pulled up to his chest. He was rushed to the hospital, where he died early Thursday morning.

Investigators say they believe a fight between the couple may have led to the shooting.

"It's disappointing," said Lt. Balken. "Anytime we someone involved in the law enforcement world involved in something like this is tragic and especially something like this. It seems so senseless."

Sylvia Puig is being held at the Marion County jail without bond. She is facing second degree murder charges.

Ex-McHenry Co. Guard gets jail time

March 17, 2011
Herald Hitzeman

A former McHenry County Jail Guard pleaded guilty this week to two felony misconduct charges involving female inmates while he worked at the Jail, and was sentenced to 30 months probation and 40 days of periodic imprisonment.

Elias D. Fortoso, 31, of South Elgin also was fined $1,806 and must complete sex offender treatment and counseling as part of the plea agreement accepted by McHenry County Judge Sharon L. Prather.

Fortoso will serve his sentence at the Kane County jail beginning at 7 p.m. Fridays and ending at 4 p.m. Sundays for 20 weekends.

“We felt it was probably in everybody’s best interest not to have him serve it in McHenry,” said Lorinda Lamken, a special prosecutor from the State’s Attorney’s Appellate Prosecutor’s Office who was brought in to handle the case.

If Fortoso fails to report during his probation, prosecutors can bring him back to court and push for a sentence of up to five years in prison.

Lamken said Fortoso pleaded guilty to instances on Feb. 1, 2008 and July 23, 2009, in which he asked two female inmates to show him their breasts — which they did.

Three other custodial misconduct charges against Fortoso were dropped as part of the agreement.


Jail officer steals inmate's property, ends up behind bars

March 18, 2011

A Fort Payne Corrections Officer spent time on the other side of the bars Thursday after he was charged with stealing $175 worth of an inmate’s property.

Jesse Aaron House, 19, of Fort Payne, was charged with theft following a Thursday investigation into an inmate’s missing property, according to a DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office release.

House resigned from his position, returned the stolen items and was released on a $500 bond, the release said.

Federal Prison Guard in San Diego accused of having sex with inmate

March 18, 2011
Tony Perry

A Guard at the Federal Prison in downtown San Diego has been indicted on suspicion of having sex with an inmate, officials announced Friday.

Brandon McKinney, 34, a guard at the Metropolitan Correctional Center, is accused of having sex with a female inmate while on duty on July 20, 2010.

McKinney is charged with sexual abuse of a ward, which carries a maximum 15 years in prison. Federal Magistrate Judge William Gallo on Friday ordered McKinney held in custody until a bail hearing Tuesday.

Ex-Cook County Jail Guard admits bringing marijuana to work

March 22, 2011

When Dwayne Jones was arrested for bringing 10 grams of marijuana into Cook County Jail last year, he denied the drugs were his.

On Tuesday, the former correctional officer admitted he brought the cannabis to work and was sentenced to 18 months probation.

Sheriff’s officers searching Jones’ bag after they were tipped off about the contraband also found a cell phone, charger, earphones and DVDs of the Discovery Channel series “Cook County Jail” and MSNBC’s “The Squeeze,” which focuses on the roles of the sheriff’s gang intelligence officers, authorities said at the time of his arrest.

Officers are not allowed to have electronics while at the jail.

Jones, who was on probationary status since he had been on the job for less than a year, was immediately fired.

Jones, of the 10300 block of Walden Parkway, originally faced two counts of possession of contraband in a penal institution and one count of officer misconduct. He pleaded guilty to one count of bringing contraband to a penal institution Tuesday before Judge Nicholas Ford.

Jail faces suit over alleged fondling of inmate

A federal lawsuit filed last week by a former inmate accuses Lenawee County Jail officials of complicity in an alleged sexual assault by a guard last year.

The officer accused of fondling an Adrian man while dressing him in a jail uniform is also facing criminal charges in Lenawee County Circuit Court. Leo Merle Swinehart, 58, retired after being suspended during an investigation of the fondling accusation.
A suit filed for the 23-year-old Adrian man by Mount Clemens attorney Craig Tank alleges that Swinehart engaged in a “widespread pattern” of sexual abuse of inmates that was covered up in “a police code of silence.”

Sheriff Jack Welsh declined Monday to comment on the lawsuit. He said he had not yet received a copy of the complaint.

Parties were served notice on Friday that a suit was filed March 15 in United States District Court in Detroit. The suit seeks more than $75,000 in compensation for emotional and psychological damages and requests punitive damages.

A second-degree criminal sexual conduct charge was authorized against Swinehart last year after detectives from Ingham and Branch counties were brought in to investigate the inmate’s complaint, Welsh said last year.

Swinehart requested a psychological evaluation on Dec. 1 and was ruled competent to stand trial at a Feb. 16 hearing before Circuit Judge Margaret M.S. Noe. A trial in the criminal case is scheduled for April 18.

No hearings have yet been scheduled in federal court for the civil suit. According to the complaint, Swinehart allegedly fondled the inmate’s genitals and asked if he was gay while having him change into a jail uniform on March 10. The man was arrested the day before for operating while intoxicated.

The suit claims Swinehart was involved in at least four other incidents with inmates. The suit claims he was investigated for contacting an inmate after his release whom he intended to date. Two other inmates complained of being fondled by him, the suit stated, and Swinehart is accused of being involved in an incident in which an inmate was reportedly given cherry pie by officers for running naked through the jail.

Then-Sheriff Larry Richardson reported in 2006 he fired two jail officers after the 2006 cherry pie incident was investigated.

Tank claimed in the suit that supervisors were deliberately indifferent to Swinehart’s sexual abuse of inmates and that jail policies and practices included “ratification” of excessive force and criminal acts against inmates.

He claimed that county jail practices include: “A police code of silence wherein other correctional officers and supervisors habitually cover up improper acts, including excessive force, violent criminal and/or sexual acts of correctional officers by fabricating the accounts to the media and in official reports and internal affairs investigations, all of which are designed to falsely exonerate officers from potential civil liability.”

Trial opens for former Correction Officer

March 23, 2011
Milton Valencia

Moises Ballista, a former Correction Officer at the South Middlesex Correctional Center in Framingham, routinely had sexual relations with female inmates at the minimum-security, prerelease center for women. He acknowledged the actions in federal court yesterday.

Five years ago, he was sentenced to nine months in a county jail for violating state laws prohibiting relations between inmates and correctional officers, even when the sex is consensual.

But now a federal jury — made up of 10 women — will decide whether Ballista and his supervisors at the state Department of Correction violated the civil rights of one of the inmates, a case that could end in a damage award. The ruling could also put the same responsibility on state supervisors as on Ballista.

The woman, Christina Chao, 31, alleges that Ballista, capitalizing on his role as an officer, used his power to pressure her into between 50 and 100 sexual acts when she was an inmate eight years ago. She also asserts state officials failed to intervene, despite a history of similar accusations against Ballista.

Chao, who was incarcerated for drug dealing, said she could not complain out of fear she would be punished. The lawsuit alleges the wrongdoing was in violation of the Eighth Amendment prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment.

“It was their responsibility to protect female prisoners from sexual predators like Moises Ballista,’’ Chao’s lead lawyer, Andrew M. Fischer, said of the supervisors during opening arguments in federal court in Boston yesterday. “They’re responsible because they let him break the rules.’’

Matt Thompson, a lawyer for Ballista, 34, said yesterday that his client did not deny having sex with Chao, pointing out that he pleaded guilty to six state crimes in 2006. He was sentenced to nine months in jail.

However, Thompson said, the sex was consensual, and occurred after a lengthy time of flirting between Ballista and Chao, after Chao first arrived at the correctional facility in the spring of 2003. The relations went on for more than a year.

Thompson said Chao could not assert her civil rights were violated simply because she felt cheated or heartbroken. He argued that Ballista had at one point tried to end the relationship but that Chao wanted it to continue. Stephen Dietrick, deputy general counsel for the Department of Correction, argued that Ballista’s superiors could not be held responsible for consensual acts between an inmate and an “unprofessional’’ who had been taught proper protocol but ignored it.

Dietrick said Ballista was taught basic sexual policies in the years before he met Chao, after the Framingham center was changed from a men’s to a women’s facility. He also said that supervisors looked into reports of Ballista’s relations with women, but that Chao denied anything occurred at the time. Once the allegations were confirmed, Ballista was fired and subsequently charged, Dietrick said.

But Fischer, in his opening arguments yesterday, argued that correction officials received reports of Ballista’s relationships with inmates even before Chao arrived at the Framingham facility, but that the reports were not properly investigated.

Meantime, according to Fischer, Chao felt compelled to continue with the sexual acts.

Fischer used the testimony of a former inmate who was at the facility at the same time as Chao, to show that inmates followed a general rule that they not complain out of fear that they be disciplined, possibly even transferred to a more secure facility.

“You go back to . . . a closed-custody unit,’’ said Ethel Jones, a former inmate. “It’s one very small room . . . just a toilet, mattress . . . no one wants to go there, especially when you weren’t wrong, you were just treated like you were wrong.’’

Former Nebraska Prison Guard Sentenced in Drug Case
Columbus, Neb.

March 21, 2011

A former Nebraska Corrections Officer who did volunteer drug counseling with prison inmates has been given jail time and probation for selling marijuana.

The Columbus Telegram says Paul Hicks, of Columbus, was
sentenced in Platte County District Court last week to 30 months of probation for delivery of a controlled substance. Judge Robert Steinke also sentenced Hicks to 180 days in the Platte County Detention Facility. Hicks is to report to the jail this Friday to begin serving 90 days, with the remaining time to be served in 30-day increments in 2012 and 2013, unless waived by the court.

Hick, who counseled inmates at the state penitentiary on the dangers of drugs abuse, was accused of selling marijuana to an undercover informant on three occasions last year.

Salem Prison Guard sentenced for supplying contraband

March 21, 2011
Stacey Barchenger

A former Officer at Oregon State Penitentiary was sentenced to probation today for bringing tobacco into the prison last year.

Tara Martinmaas, 34, pleaded guilty today to one charge of supplying contraband, a felony. She was ordered to comply with a 2-year term of court probation, pay more than $1,500 in fees and have no contact with Department of Corrections facilities or inmates.

A misdemeanor charge of custodial sexual misconduct, involving alleged romantic touching between Martinmaas and an inmate, was dismissed as part of the plea agreement.

Martinmaas brought tobacco, which is contraband, into the prison between September and November. She was hired with DOC in 2007 and worked at the state penitentiary, according to corrections officials.

Martinmaas’ attorney, Suzanne Taylor, said her client took responsibility by pleading guilty.

Prison Guard arrested

March 14, 2011
Cal Bryant

WINTON – A Prison Guard found himself on the other side of the bars here last week.

Eric Lashawn Askew, 28 of Ahoskie, a Sergeant with Rivers Correctional Institute of Winton, was arrested by the Hertford County Sheriff’s Office on sexual assault charges.

Sheriff Juan Vaughan said Askew, who turned himself in on March 9, was charged with attempted second degree rape, a felony, sexual battery and assault on a female, both misdemeanors.

Vaughan said the alleged crimes took place against a female correctional officer at the private prison.

Askew was placed under a $25,000 secured bond and was released on the same day of his arrest. He made his first court appearance on Friday.

Sheriff Vaughan said officials at Rivers Correctional called his office to investigate the incident. HCSO Investigator John Joyner handled that task.

Morgan County Corrections Officer arrested on drug charges

March 23, 2011
Victoria Cumbow
The Huntsville Times

DECATUR, Alabama -- A Morgan County Corrections Officer was arrested this week after sheriff's officials busted him distributing drugs, said Morgan County Sheriff Ana Franklin.

Marquez Laroy Goodwin, 22, was charged with unlawful distribution of a controlled substance and his bond was set at $1 million.

Sheriff's officials received information that Goodwin, a corrections officer for more than a year, was selling narcotics both inside the jail and in the community, Franklin said.

Undercover officers set up an undercover drug sale with Goodwin as a target, Franklin said.

"He participated in the distribution of marijuana during the operation," she said.

Following the undercover sting, Goodwin was pulled over in a traffic stop and police recovered marked bills used in the sting and a pistol.

"We are not going to tolerate this behavior," she said. "The vast majority of corrections officers are hard working and honest people, and they don't want this behavior either."

Franklin said additional arrests are expected and could include more sheriff's employees. Franklin couldn't comment on how the sheriff's office received information on Goodwin, but said the investigation began immediately after.

Former Corrections Officer gets probation for sex charge

March 23, 2011
Rich Miller 

EVANSVILLE, IN (WFIE) - A former Vanderburgh County Corrections officer has been sentenced to two years probation after pleading guilty to one count of sexual battery, a class D felony.

Six other charges were dismissed.

Craig Wilhelm, a former deputy jailer, must complete a treatment program, have no contact with anyone in the Vanderburgh County Sheriff's Office and register as a sex offender for ten years.

Wilhelm resigned in September of 2010, when charges of sexual battery and public indecency were brought up against him after female co-workers claimed he exposed himself to them.

The sheriff's office said the incidents occurred in "employee only" areas of the facility where there are no surveillance cameras.


Prison Guards Charged In Inmate's Beating

March 24, 2011


A Guard has been indicted on charges of beating an inmate at New Jersey State Prison. 

He and five others also are accused of failing to submit reports that reflected the use of force in the Oct. 26 incident, which officials say was captured on video. 

The three sergeants and three correction officers have been suspended without pay.

The Mercer County Prosecutor's Office says corrections officer Kevin McEady kicked the inmate. The 48-year-old Camden resident has been a guard since 1994. 

Prosecutor's spokeswoman Casey DeBlasio says McEady and the five others didn't report what happened. 

DeBlasio says McEady has yet to retain a lawyer. 

DeBlasio says the inmate's name is being withheld for his own protection.

Former Washington Prison Guard sentenced to Jail

A former Stafford Creek Prison Corrections Officer has been sentenced to a month in JAIL for hiring someone to steal his car so he could file a fake insurance claim.

March 24, 2011
The Associated Press

The Daily World reports Keith A. Johnson pleaded guilty to theft in an agreement with the prosecutor who dropped a charge of filing a false claim.

Court records say Johnson talked to a prison inmate in 2009 about setting up the theft. The car was taken from a Tacoma parking lot and burned. Johnson filed an insurance claim for more than $15,000.

At the sentencing Monday, Grays Harbor Superior Court Judge Gordon Godfrey told Johnson, "If dumb was a crime, you'd be serving life."

Former Corrections Officer guilty of bribery

March 24, 2011
Associated Press

A former Corrections Officer at the Federal Penitentiary in Pollock has pleaded guilty to bribery and providing prison contraband.

Twenty-six-year-old Derrick Stevenson of Moreauville entered his plea on Wednesday.

According to testimony at the hearing, Stevenson admitted providing tobacco to a prison inmate for $1,000.

Stevenson faces a maximum of 15 years in prison and a fine of $250,000.

Sentencing is scheduled for June 23.

Another inmate beaten at Jail

•Several Jailers fired earlier for excessive force

March 25, 2011

The Hinds County Sheriff's Department is investigating another inmate being assaulted at the Raymond jail following the firings of eight jailers and the suspension of a ninth.

The assault, however, is separate from the case involving the nine jailers on March 6.

It's clear inmate Charles Johnson, an accused murder and carjacking suspect in Jackson, was assaulted, a Sheriff's Department spokesman said Thursday.

"What is unclear at this point is who assaulted Charles Johnson and why Charles Johnson was assaulted," Lt. Jeffery Scott said.

Johnson's family has reported the assault to the FBI, a relative said Thursday.

The relative who didn't want to be identified, citing a fear of retaliation, said Johnson was beaten severely at the Detention Center in Raymond on Feb. 16, the day he turned himself in on the murder and other charges.

The relative said Johnson was shackled when he was allegedly beaten by jailers. She said Johnson suffered an eye injury in the attack.

In addition to reporting the incident to the FBI, the relative said a complaint has been lodged with the Sheriff's Department.

Confirmation of Johnson's assault came on the same day four of the eight fired jailers unsuccessfully appealed their dismissals by Hinds County Sheriff Malcolm McMillin for using excessive force with five or six inmates.

"I'm glad that the review board agreed with me that that was excessive force and firing was the appropriate punishment," McMillin said.

Appeal hearings for the other four fired jailers will be next week, Scott said.

Those fired had two to nine years of experience and included a sergeant. Whether they will face charges depends on the findings of an FBI investigation.

Evidence against the ex-jailers include surveillance tape of the incident, the Sheriff's Department has said.

The sheriff said he has placed the ninth jailer on a 30-day unpaid suspension "because he's still in training and did not know what he was supposed to do."

McMillin, who is campaigning for a sixth term, said Thursday afternoon he had not received any additional complaints involving excessive force by jailers.

Johnson's relative said they filed a complaint Thursday with the FBI about the beating.

She said the family didn't instigate an official complaint until after Johnson was transferred Wednesday from the Detention Center in Raymond to the Hinds County Jail in downtown Jackson.

Johnson, who is from Clinton, has been in the jail since Feb. 16, when he surrendered to sheriff's officials for allegedly killing 22-year-old Eugene Roberts on Feb. 15 and carjacking two vehicles, including a FedEx delivery truck the same day.

County Judge Houston Patton denied Johnson bond on Monday at Johnson's preliminary hearing.

Johnson, who has a prior felony conviction, confessed to the shooting, but said he shot Roberts because Roberts earlier had tried to kill him, according to police testimony Monday.

Facing three opponents in the Democratic primary in August, McMillin said he does not expect what has occurred at the jail to be a campaign issue.

"I've done the right thing," he said.

Ex-Iowa Corrections Officer Gets Probation For Sex

March 25, 2011

BURLINGTON, Iowa -- A former Department of Correctional Services Residential Officer has been given probation for having sex with a Burlington halfway house resident.

The Burlington Hawk Eye reports the judge suspended a pair of two-year prison sentences for Megan Cecil, 32, of Donnellson, and instead gave her two years' probation and ordered her to register as a sex offender.

Cecil was sentenced Friday for two counts of sexual misconduct. Two other counts were dismissed as part of a plea deal.

Des Moines County prosecutors said Cecil had sex four times in March 2010 with a male resident of the Burlington Men's Residential Facility, where she worked.

Cecil had been a full-time residential officer at the facility since May 2008 but resigned last April. The Department of Corrections began investigating her soon after.

Cleveland Correction Officer arrested for alleged sexual assault of a male inmate

Highland Hills Police still investigating

March 27, 2011
Nicole DeChant

HIGHLAND HILLS, Ohio - Cleveland Police Sergeant Sammy Morris says Highland Hills Police arrested at 32-year old Cleveland Correction Officer for the alleged sexual assault of a male inmate at the House of Correction in Highland Hills.

The officer was arrested last Friday afternoon by Highland Hills Police after a complaint by a 24-year old inmate. After the complaint was filed Highland Hills Police started an investigation. 

Morris says the Cleveland House of Correction is located in Highland Hills and therefore, Highland Hills Police will have total responsibility for the investigation. However, Morris says Safety Director Martin L. Flask directed the Cleveland Chief of Police to monitor the investigation and provide assistance to Highland Hills' investigators, if needed. 

If after investigation the correction officer is charged with a crime, he will be suspended from duty, without pay, pending adjudication of the criminal charges.

Jail Guard Accused Of Attacking School Employee

March 29, 2011

OSCEOLA COUNTY, Fla. -- An Osceola County Jail Guard was arrested after she was allegedly caught on camera fighting a school employee at an elementary school.

Osceola County sheriff's investigators say the blurry school surveillance video shows Osceola County Jail Corrections Officer Maxine Lloyd confronting a school employee and then attacking him in front of several school employees. In the video, the employee is holding an umbrella.

"She moved the car, got out of the vehicle and became involved in a physical altercation with him," explained Twis Lizasuain, Osceola County Sheriff's Office.

According to the arrest report, Lloyd was picking up her child from Koa Elementary School in Kissimmee and had stopped her car right on the crosswalk. Investigators say, when a school employee directing traffic asked Lloyd to move her car forward, she identified herself as an officer than shoved the employee.

"She told the school official that she was an officer and she repeated that she was an officer. But that's not relevant in this case. She was arrested because it was a parent that got involved in a physical altercation with a school employee," Lizasuain said.

Lloyd drove away and left the scene, but several hours later was arrested at her home. She bonded out early Tuesday morning.

The jail wouldn't specify Lloyd's exact role, but according to Lloyd's personnel file she has been employed with Osceola County since 2005 and has had no previous disciplinary actions.

Lloyd was arrested and charged with battery. An internal investigation is underway to determine if she should be fired.

3 Guards indicted in beating of prisoner

March 30, 2011
Associated Press

AMARILLO, Texas — Three fired Prison Guards have been indicted over the alleged beating of an inmate at a maximum-security unit in Texas.

The Amarillo Globe-News reported Wednesday that a fourth indicted guard retired after the June 2010 incident at the Clements Unit.

A Potter County grand jury on March 9 indicted John Jowers II, Matthew Borunda, Robert Nixon and Jeremy Bevill on misdemeanor official oppression charges. Conviction carries a penalty of up to a year in jail.

Texas Department of Criminal Justice spokesman Jason Clark says Jackie Ronald Green is serving a life term for a 2007 killing in Smith County. Clark says Green was either threatening to or throwing things at the guards.

TCDJ fired Borunda, Nixon and Bevill shortly after the incident. Clark says Jowers resigned.

Jail Guard resigns after relationship with Inmate

April 1, 2011
Heather Sorentrue

MARION COUNTY, Florida -- 

A Marion County Jail guard quit her job after an internal investigation started looking into whether she had an inappropriate relationship with an inmate.

Marion County Sheriff's Office Corrections Officer Jillian Schulz, 28, was accused of being involved with inmate Anthony Nativio.

Nativio is a convicted felon with past charges related to possessing LSD with intent to distribute and possessing hydromorphone and oxycodone.

He has also been in trouble for leaving the scene of a crash with injuries.

Internal Affairs investigators said they received copies of around 70 calls that Nativio made while in jail to phone numbers linked to Schultz.

During the investigation, Schultz admitted to the relationship and eventually apologized and stated she would be ending it.

Schulz started working for the Marion County Sheriff's Office in 2003.

Prison Guard Charged With Assaulting Man

April 1, 2011

ALLENTOWN, Pa. -- Allentown police have arrested a prison guard in connection with an assault.

It happened this past November in the 600 block of Hamilton Street.

Police found a man lying on the sidewalk, suffering from head trauma.

They say the victim described his assailant's clothing as a correction's uniform.

That led them to Cedric Sutton, 53, of Whitehall.

Sutton was employed as a guard at the State Corrections Facility on Hamilton Street when the assault happened.

He was arrested this afternoon and is facing assault charges.

Chelan Co. Jail bribery nets Guard 2 years in prison

April 1, 2011
Associated Press

WENATCHEE, Wash. (AP) - Former Chelan County Jail corrections officer Charles Storlie was sentenced to more than two years in prison Thursday in Wenatchee for taking bribes from inmates.

The 40-year-old pleaded guilty to three counts of bribery committed in September 2010 and documented by undercover investigators.

The Wenatchee World reports one inmate paid him $50 for a confiscated cell phone. Another paid $50 for a bag of fast food and a tin of chewing tobacco.

Investigators had also accused Storlie of taking $150 to allow an inmate's girlfriend to visit for sex.

Corrections Officer arrested on drug charges

March 23, 2011

DECATUR, AL (WAFF) – A Morgan County Corrections Officer was arrested in a drug sting Thursday.

22-year-old Marquez Laroy Goodwin of Trinity was arrested for unlawful distribution of a controlled substance after drug agents conducted an undercover investigation.

The Morgan County Sheriff's Department said agents bought marijuana from Goodwin and another man, Andrew Stephen Collier, several times during the month.

Tuesday, agents conducted a controlled buy from the suspects. After the buy, agents stopped Goodwin and found a handgun and marked money from the sting.

Investigators then served an outstanding arrest warrant for narcotics on Collier at the Stay Lodge. They also found marijuana and a set of digital scales in the room.

Goodwin's bond was set at $1,000,000 because of the presence of the handgun and the fact that Goodwin is a corrections officer.

"I believe that most of the corrections officers are honest, hard working officers, but this type of behavior will not be tolerated," said Sheriff Ana Franklin. "This investigation is ongoing and will continue until we are satisfied that we have all the parties involved."

Franklin said agents received information that other corrections officers are involved in distributing drugs.

Collier was charged with two counts of possession of marijuana and one count of unlawful distribution of a controlled substance. His bond was set at $7,500.

Sioux Falls Man Sentenced in Assault With Firearm

March 29, 2011
Andrea Leesch

SIOUX FALLS, SD - A former Minnehaha County Corrections officer is going to prison for an assault with a firearm.

Police arrested 31-year-old Israel Suarez in August 2010 after he pulled a loaded gun on his ex-wife's fiance in a Sioux Falls parking lot.

When police found Suarez at his home, they found a sawed-off shotgun, hand gun, two rifles, marijuana, and drug paraphernalia.

Minnehaha County Judge Peter Lieberman sentenced Suarez to 10 years in prison with four years suspended.

Prison Guard indicted for marijuana charges

April 05, 2011

BRIDGETON - A South Woods State Prison Corrections Officer was indicted last week for official misconduct and possession with intent to distribute marijuana for allegedly planning to sell the drug to an inmate.

Aikeem Williams, 25, of the Glenn Park apartments, in Bridgeton, faces one count second-degree official misconduct, one count third-degree possession of a controlled dangerous substance with intent to distribute and one count third-degree conspiracy.

Williams was charged with the offenses on Nov. 25, 2009, following an investigation by the Cumberland County Prosecutor's Office Organized Crime Bureau and the Special Investigation Division at South Woods State Prison.

According to authorities, Williams attempted to enter the prison with 120 grams of marijuana. Before attempting to leave the facility, he was intercepted by law enforcement officials.

He was later found to be concealing 16 individually wrapped baggies containing marijuana concealed in his Department of Corrections winter jacket.

According to the indictment, Williams conspired with two individuals identified as William Burden and Kyle Taylor in order to carry out the crime.

Neither Burden nor Taylor are named as defendants in the indictment - only co-conspirators.

Upon arrest, he had been lodged in Cumberland County Jail on $250,000 bail. However, he has since been released

Former Prison Guard found guilty of battering inmate

April 3, 2011

JUNEAU, Wisconsin — A former Corrections Officer has been found guilty of battering an inmate last summer.

Using an Alford plea, Driftten S. Kitzman, 41, Waupun, entered a no contest plea to misdemeanor battery charges during a hearing in Dodge County Circuit Court.

Kitzman was accused of repeatedly punching an inmate in a packing room at Dodge Correctional Institution on July 19.

Felony charges of abuse of residents in a penal facility and misconduct were dismissed on a prosecutor's motion.

Judge Brian Pfitzinger ordered Kitzman to perform 80 hours of community service within a year.

Security Director Rick Phillips contacted the Dodge County Sheriff's Department to report that a restrained inmate had allegedly been struck by staff members on July 19.

Prior to the incident, the inmate had been in a holding cell in the intake area with several other inmates who had been warned by officers to be quiet, according to the criminal complaint.

The inmate was singled out by corrections officers and led into a room across the hallway. The inmate told police that while he was in the room, an officer struck him in the face, and they tumbled to the ground after tripping on boxes stacked in the room.

Upon hearing the commotion, three other corrections officers, including Kitzman, came in to help, according to the complaint.

A fourth officer entered the room to find the four officers restraining the inmate. A female corrections officer told police that after she handcuffed the inmate, Kitzman punched the inmate in the side several times while yelling "stop resisting," according to the complaint.

The female corrections officer testified that Kitzman punched the inmate again moments later while continuing to yell "stop resisting," although the inmate was clearly restrained, according to the complaint.

According to Wisconsin Department of Corrections spokesperson Linda Eggert, Kitzman has not been employed with the state as a corrections officer since Sept. 28, 2010.

NYC jail guard accused in escape-for-cocaine plot

Associated Press - April 6, 2011

NEW YORK (AP) - A veteran New York City correction officer is accused of agreeing to help an inmate escape jail in exchange for three kilos of cocaine and cash.

Authorities say an undercover federal agent helped thwart Robert Whitfield's plan. An accomplice also was arrested.

The city's Department of Investigation says the officer plotted the exchange of drugs for the inmate's escape from Rikers Island in phone conversations with a Drug Enforcement Administration agent. He was arrested Tuesday during a sting operation.

Whitfield was arraigned Wednesday in Manhattan. Defense attorney Peter Troxler did not immediately return a call requesting comment.

The 48-year-old Whitfield has been a correction officer since 1990.

Department of Correction Commissioner Dora B. Schriro (shree-ROH') said in a statement that the agency has "zero tolerance" for employees who compromise security.

Corrections Officer gets 18-month Jail term for sexually assaulting inmate

April 7, 2011
Minna Sugimoto 

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - An adult Corrections Officer on Thursday tearfully expressed remorse for abusing his authority and sexually assaulting a male inmate, who was living as a woman, at the Oahu Community Correctional Center two years ago.

Ryan Malasig, 44, was once tasked with guarding prisoners. At his sentencing, he did his best to avoid becoming one.

"It was a bad decision on my part," he said. "All I need to let you guys know is I'm deeply sorry for what had happened."

But prosecutors didn't buy it. They say Malasig had not taken responsibility whatsoever prior to sentencing, and asked a judge to impose a 10-year prison term, the maximum punishment for second-degree sex assault.

"If anything, he's remorseful about the fact that he's now found himself in a position of possibly facing 10 years," Leilani Young, deputy prosecutor, said. "Now the tears come. Now the 'I'm sorry' comes."

Prosecutors say the 33-year-old victim was on kitchen duty at OCCC, when the guard entered the module -- even though he was assigned to a different part of the facility -- and had the prisoner perform oral sex on him. The inmate kept a shirt that had Malasig's DNA on it and later turned it into authorities.

"You went above the law and violated your promise, your oath to protect and serve," the victim said in a letter that was read during the hearing. "You only thought of your own sexual desires. I hope you become an example to other corrections officers who might try to abuse their power."

The defense argued for a sentence of probation with no incarceration.

"He's led a completely law-abiding life," Craig Nagamine, deputy public defender, said. "He's never had contacts with the law. He's worked his entire life. He's a family man. He has children."

Circuit Judge Richard Pollack handed down an 18-month jail term and ordered state sheriffs to take the former corrections officer into custody immediately.

"Mr. Malasig, you took gross advantage of your position to commit the criminal conduct in this case on a very person that you were required to oversee and, in one sense, protect," the judge said.

The defendant pleaded no contest to the charge. He must register as a convicted sex offender for the rest of his life.

Hinds Co. Sheriff fires more Jailers


April 3, 2011

Facing allegations of inmate beatings at the Raymond Detention Center, Hinds County Sheriff Malcolm McMillin has fired 9 more Detention Officers.

The investigation into excessive force used on a handcuffed and shackled inmates remains on-going.

This comes on the heels of the alleged jail-house beating of inmate Charles Johnson.

"This is not an announcement that I like to make," Sheriff McMillin said. "But it's necessary when one is in the process of clearing our own house."

The photo's were allegedly taken inside a Jackson hospital by 4 of the 9 jailers who were fired.

They show Charles Johnson, 32, severely beaten.

A cigarette was placed in his mouth allegedly by the guards who took the photo's. Johnson was jailed February 16 for murder and the armed carjacking of a Fed Ex truck driver.

Sheriff McMillin says his investigation is not over.

"With the publicity given these two cases that there will be additional complaints and as they come in they will be verified as to the truthfulness of those reports."

Sheriff Malcolm McMillin launched an internal investigation with the new round of firings.

"If we have a violation of orders, if we have use of inappropriate force, we are going to take the appropriate action as a result of that."

17 jailers at the Raymond Detention Center were initially fired from their jobs.

The sheriff says only one has been reinstated.

Sheriff McMillin had previously fired 8 guards after a separate incident of alleged brutality at the jail.

Both cases of allegedly brutality have been turned over to the FBI for a possible criminal investigation.

Jail Administrator Charged With Having Sex With Inmate

April 14, 2011
Brent Frazier

CENTERVILLE, Tenn. – The County Jail Administrator who resigned last week, amid criminal charges he had sexual contact with an inmate, was an impeccable employee, according to the man who hired him.

"According to state inspectors and all, he had a top jail," Randal Ward, the sheriff in Hickman County, told NewsChannel 5.

He was referring to Quinton Jerry Wasden, the Nunnelly, TN, man indicted last week on one count of sexual contact with inmates.

"As far as inspection-wise, all records, cleanliness of the jail, manners of the jail and all, we were one of the top jails in middle Tennessee," the sheriff continued.

Wasden, Ward's jail administrator for nearly five years now, stepped down last week after being arrested by the TBI. Ward said the bureau had just wrapped a roughly one-year investigation into a female inmate's allegations.

"Could've been a couple of times that I know of that the incident happened," Ward said.

The sheriff is not at liberty to elaborate on the details of the TBI investigation; but he did confirm to NewsChannel 5 that the alleged misconduct did happen on jail property, though not inside a jail cell.

"(Wasden) talked with me, assured me that this incident didn't happen," the sheriff recalled of a conversation when the female inmate initially came forward with her claim.

Now, Wasden is again maintaining his innocence, according to the sheriff.

He has hired a private attorney, and did not return NewsChannel 5's phone calls Thursday night at his home in Nunnelly, Tennessee.

The charge is a Class-E felony- and carries a maximum sentence of one to two years.

Jail Officer FIRED after allegations of SEX with inmates

April 13, 2011
Lisa Trigg
The Tribune-Star

TERRE HAUTE — A male Jail Officer with the Vigo County Sheriff’s Department faces allegations of sexual misconduct with a detainee, official misconduct and trafficking with an inmate following an investigation of a March incident.

Shelby Smith, 25, has been terminated as a jail officer, Sheriff Greg Ewing said on Tuesday.

An investigation into the allegations began Saturday when a female inmate told another jail officer about an incident she allegedly witnessed on March 16 involving Smith and two other female inmates. The witness was in fear of her own safety, Ewing said, so she delayed reporting the incident.

“When we became aware of it on Saturday, we completed the investigation in 48 hours, and the arrest was made on Monday,” Ewing said. “Nobody in this office is above the law.”

The investigation included a review of video for the cellblock where the alleged sex acts occurred. Smith can be seen entering the cellblock and can also be seen at various times checking to see if anyone is approaching. The sheriff said he was also disturbed to see that Smith did not secure the doors to the cellblock when he entered, which could have led to inmates in that area being able to access another second-floor area of the jail.

The alleged incident occurred at about 11:30 a.m. and lasted about two minutes, the sheriff said.

The investigation showed that Smith provided chewing tobacco to the inmates in exchange for the sexual encounter. The inmates dried the tobacco, rolled it in paper and somehow ignited the homemade cigarette so they could smoke it.

Smith was first employed as a jail officer in August 2006. He left in September 2007 to serve in the military, and returned as a jail employee in December 2007, according to jail employment records. He then left for a military tour in November 2008, and returned to work at the jail in January 2010.

Ewing said Smith had no disciplinary issues while he was employed at the jail.

“Clearly, this came out of left field,” Ewing said of his surprise at the incident, which appears to be a one-time occurrence.

“I lost a lot of sleep over this, because the public trusts us,” Ewing said. “I was really upset because I wear this uniform with pride and honor, and to have someone do that to this office, they will be dealt with to the full extent of the law.”

A warrant for Smith’s arrest was issued Monday, and bail was set at $10,000 with 10 percent allowed. Ewing said he had arranged to have Smith housed at the Clay County Jail pending future court dates, but a $1,000 cash bail was posted for his release on Monday.

Smith is scheduled to return to court on Thursday for filing of formal charges.

Corrections Officer arrested trying to smuggle heroin to inmates

A Corrections Officer at the Mass. Correctional Institute in Norfolk was arrested Monday for trying to smuggle heroin to the jail’s inmates.

Ronald McGinn Jr., 40, of Bridgewater, was caught setting up a deal that called for him to smuggle an ounce of heroin into the jail while collecting $2,500 as a fee for for the job.

The FBI caught wind of McGinn’s operation when a lieutenant from the Mass. Department of Corrections called in with a tip in January.

With the help of an informant inmate and an undercover agent acting as a heroin dealer, the FBI was able to catch McGinn in the act, successfully selling him an ounce of heroin and giving him $1000 as a down payment on the $2,500 fee.

According to an affidavit provided by an FBI special agent, McGinn had been involved with smuggling items such as cell phones, iPods, creatine, and narcotics to inmates for the last few years.

If McGinn is convicted of the charges, he could face up to 20 years imprisonment followed by five years of supervised release and a $1,00,000 fine, according a Department of Justice press release.

N.J. Corrections Officer convicted of smuggling drugs, cell phones to inmates faces 14 years in prison

April 18, 2011

Luis Roman spent 18 years as a corrections officer, but now he could spend 14 years on the other side of the bars for sneaking cell phones and drugs to inmates.

Roman pleaded guilty today to racketeering and official misconduct charges for running a smuggling network at the Adult Diagnostic and Treatment Center in Avenel and then at Northern State Prison in Newark.

"This wasn’t a single cell phone," Department of Corrections Commissioner Gary Lanigan said. "This was a criminal enterprise."

State officials said they will seek a 14-year prison term with five years of parole ineligibility at sentencing on Oct. 3.

Authorities said Roman, who has been free on $100,000 bail and appeared in court wearing an open-collared black shirt, made thousands of dollars in an operation involving 35 other people.

"As he participated in this elaborate smuggling enterprise, Luis Roman demonstrated how much he had in common with the criminal inmates he was supposed to be guarding," Attorney General Paula Dow said in a statement. "With this plea, he will officially join their ranks."

After the plea hearing, Roman’s attorney, Ruben Scolavino, said his client "has taken full responsibility for his actions. He’s happy to get this behind him."

Authorities said Roman smuggled prepaid phones, cocaine, heroin and marijuana into prison several times a week, hiding the items in his protective vest and boots.

Corrections has since taken steps to make it harder for smugglers, Lanigan said. Within months, he said, officers at Northern State Prison will test new protective vests to be worn over shirts. These will be easier to remove and scan before officers enter the prison, he said.

"We are very serious about stopping the flow of cell phones," Lanigan said.

Investigators from the Department of Corrections began suspecting a corrections officer, or other prison worker after phones of the same makes and models were confiscated from inmates. Working with the State Police, they eventually targeted Roman, who was arrested Nov. 14, 2009.

Officials said inmates’ relatives and friends were accomplices, buying the phones and drugs and packaging them for delivery. Inmates wired money to Ann Marie Roman, 37, of Woodbridge, who is now Roman’s ex-wife. She pleaded guilty in September to conspiracy to commit bribery, admitting that, at her husband’s direction, she received thousands of dollars through Western Union and MoneyGram as payment for smuggled items.

Besides Roman, 18 other people were charged with racketeering. Five have pleaded guilty, said Paul Loriquet, spokesman for the Attorney General’s Office.

Sixteen inmates were accused of buying phones. Eight have pleaded guilty.

Breaking News: Baldwin Corrections Officer arrested on sodomy charges

April 11, 2011

BAY MINETTE, Ala. — The Baldwin County Sheriff’s Office reports it has arrested a Baldwin County Sheriff’s Corrections officer on a first-degree sodomy charge.

According to their news release, on Tuesday, April 5, the Baldwin Count Sheriff’s Office received information from a third-party inmate indicating improper sexual contact had taken place between a corrections officer and another inmate at the Baldwin County Corrections Center in Bay Minette. The sheriff’s office opened a criminal and internal investigation.

An attempt to interview the inmate failed to reveal the identity of the corrections officer. Investigators were able to figure out that Corrections officer Jimmy Katrell Craft, 23, of Atmore, Ala., could possibly be involved. On Wednesday, April 6, the Sheriff's office reports Craft was placed on administrative leave with pay.

The following day, investigators received a written complaint outlining the sexual contact between the inmate and Craft. Investigators asked to speak with the victim with his attorneys present.

Around 5:30 p.m., Friday, April 8, investigators met with the inmate and his attorneys at the Corrections Center where a formal interview was conducted.According to the news release, the inmate said around Feb. 12, he was taken from his cell by Craft and told to have sex.

On April 11, Craft was interviewed by investigators. The news release stated Craft admitted to sodomizing the inmate victim at that time. Craft was subsequently arrested and charged with sodomy in the first degree. Craft was transported to the Corrections Center. Bond was set at $25,000. Craft is not currently listed as an inmate. According to the press release, he has also been terminated from the Baldwin County Sheriff’s Office.
5 charged in Jail cell phone bribery case

April 20, 2011

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas (AP) — Three South Texas jailers and two others have been charged with conspiring to bribe public officials to smuggle cell phones into a detention center.

Charged in a federal indictment unsealed in Corpus Christi on Wednesday are 47-year-old former Nueces County corrections officer Juanita Mendez, 26-year-old Brooks County corrections officer Jose Martinez and his 18-year-old colleague Juan Munoz.

Also charged were two alleged members of the "Raza Unida" prison gang, 29-year-old Preston Mascorro and 30-year-old Rowdy Lopez.

The federal statement says all five are in custody. A telephone message to Lopez's attorney Wednesday was not returned. No attorneys were listed for the other four defendants.

Ex-Jail Commander charged with damaging jails, intoxication

April 21, 2011
Geoff Liesik

DUCHESNE — The former commander of the Duchesne County Jail has been charged with damaging a patrol car following an apparent domestic dispute at his home Monday that ended with his arrest.

Todd Ronald Johnson, 44, made his first appearance Thursday in 8th District Court, where he is charged with damaging jails, a third-degree felony; and intoxication, a class C misdemeanor.

Duchesne County sheriff's deputies were called to Johnson's home in Fruitland about 8:30 p.m. Monday on a report that he and his girlfriend were arguing, "throwing things and damaging the house," according to court records.

Deputies arrested Johnson for investigation of intoxication. As he was being transported to the jail, he began to kick the windshield of the patrol car, court records state.

"We had to stop him from kicking the windshield out," said Duchesne County Sheriff's Lt. Travis Tucker. "He was trying to do that. He just didn't quite make it."

Deputies did not deploy a Taser or use other force to stop Johnson from breaking the windshield, Tucker said. They simply moved the seat he was sitting in as far forward as possible so he couldn't raise his legs.

Although the windshield remained intact, Johnson did damage the dashboard airbag compartment on the passenger side of the patrol vehicle, court records state.

County employment records show that Johnson worked for the sheriff's office from November 1998 to February 2007. He was promoted to the rank of lieutenant in November 2004 and served as jail commander until shortly before he left the sheriff's office.

An attempt to contact Johnson for comment late Thursday was unsuccessful. He is due back in court June 2.

Hearing set for Jail Captain accused of having SEX with inmate

Berkeley Brean

The Captain in the Monroe County Jail accused of having sex with an inmate will have her statements to investigators read out in court.

The hearing on her statements (known as a Huntley hearing) is June 1st.

McLaughlin is charged with 3rd degree rape, official misconduct and inappropriate use of a computer. She is accused of having sex with a former inmate in the Monroe County Jail. Because inmates cannot legally consent to have sex with anyone who works in a jail, the crime is rape.

Earlier, McLaughlin's attorney, public defender Erik Teifke, described the victim in this case, Joe Miller, as a "career criminal." He said McLaughlin would give Miller some special privileges, like making a phone call, to ease the tension in the "pressure cooker" inside the jail. Teifke said when McLaughlin stopped doing this for Miller, Miller got upset, went to the sheriff's office internal affairs and made the allegations.

McLaughlin is suspended without pay.

Ex-Jailer sentenced 2 years for BEATING inmate

April 21, 2011

SAN ANTONIO (AP) — A former Bexar County Sheriff's Deputy has been sentenced to two years in prison after being convicted on federal charges of severely beating a jail inmate.

Daniel Melgoza was sentenced Thursday. Federal prosecutors alleged at Melogza's trial in December that the longtime jail guard kicked an inmate several times in the head with his pointy cowboy boots.

Melgoza was convicted on one count of deprivation of rights and one count of obstructing justice by making a false report following the 2004 incident.

The San Antonio Express-News reported that Melgoza denied beating the inmate at trial. The 54-year-old joined the force in 1987.

Prison Guard From San Jose Admits Smuggling Cell Phones To Inmates

April 22, 2011

SACRAMENTO (CBS / AP) — A former California correctional officer was sentenced to 45 days in jail Friday for smuggling cell phones to state prison inmates.

Terry Lane was fined $5,700, which the Sacramento County district attorney’s office said is the amount of bribes he accepted from inmates for bringing in the phones. He also was placed on three years’ probation.

The four-year veteran was caught Aug. 7 bringing three phones into California State Prison, Sacramento. Prosecutors charged that he had brought in multiple phones over a three-month period.

It’s the kind of activity corrections officials are battling with trained dogs, random searches and new technology to block unauthorized calls.

Lane, 25, of San Jose, pleaded guilty Friday to felony conspiracy to aid a state inmate’s unauthorized communication. A bribery charge was dismissed in a plea deal. The conspiracy charge carried a maximum sentence of three years in state prison.

Possessing a cell phone behind bars violates prison rules but is not illegal. Inmates can lose early release credits, and employees caught smuggling phones can lose their jobs.

Supervising Deputy District Attorney Steve Secrest said those who smuggle the phones can face felonies if prosecutors can prove they conspired with inmates, as they did in Lane’s case. He noted in a statement that the phones can be used to plan crimes and escapes.

State Sen. Alex Padilla, D-Los Angeles, has introduced two bills this year that add penalties for inmates, employees or visitors smuggling cell phones. Sen. Elaine Alquist, D-Santa Clara, is carrying another bill that would require the department to conduct random searches of employees and contractors who enter prisons.

The problem has been growing for several years, despite the prison system’s use of cell phone-sniffing dogs and occasional random searches of employees. Last year, prison officials seized nearly 11,000 unauthorized phones.

Cult killer Charles Manson has been caught with two phones, earlier this year and in 2009. Another inmate was discovered in January with a phone that prison officials suspect had been used to update his Facebook page.

Corrections officials are testing new technology this year that would capture every cell phone signal from a prison, blocking unauthorized calls.

State replaces leadership at Pittsburgh prison

"I'm sure there's going to be more to this story!  Stay tune".
                          Former Jail Sergeant Sandvig 

May 2, 2011
Pittsburg Tribune-Review

The state has replaced the superintendent, two deputy superintendents and the major of the guard at the state prison in Woods Run, where eight guards recently have been suspended.

"Beginning today, there is a new leadership team in place that will take SCI Pittsburgh in a new direction," acting Corrections Secretary John Wetzel said in a press release announcing the changes.

Susan McNaughton, spokeswoman for the Department of Corrections, said she couldn`t confirm whether the personnel changes were tied to an agency investigation that has resulted in the suspensions of eight corrections officers at the facility. She did confirm that former Superintendent Melvin Lockett and the other people replaced are no longer employees of the agency.

"That`s all I can tell you," she said.

Lockett declined comment.

Union officials said previously that the agency has not told them why one guard was suspended in January and another seven were suspended about a month ago. A union official couldn`t immediately be reached for comment.

Wetzel said Louis Folino, superintendent of SCI-Greene, a maximum security prison, is the new superintendent at SCI-Pittsburgh.

"Lou is a dedicated professional with a proven record of achievement in assuming increasing levels of responsibility," Wetzel said. "He recently was named warden of the year by the North American Association of Wardens and Superintendents."

James Eckard, the deputy superintendent for facility management at SCI-Huntingdon, and Jay Whitesel, deputy superintendent for centralized services at SCI-Smithfield, will handle those same duties at SCI-Pittsburgh, Wetzel said.

Robert Gilmore, the major of the guard at SCI-Albion, is the new major of the guard for SCI-Pittsburgh, he said.

SCI-Pittsburgh houses 1,655 minimum to lower-medium security male inmates undergoing substance abuse treatment.


More to the story......

Sources: SCI Pittsburgh Guards Could Possibly Face Charges

May 4, 2011

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — The Allegheny County District Attorney is reacting to accusations against guards at SCI Pittsburgh on the North Side.

Their alleged actions were shrouded in secrecy for weeks before KDKA Investigator Marty Griffin broke new details on the case.

Sources say as many as a dozen inmates may have been sexually assaulted. Sources also say as many as eight corrections officers from SCI Pittsburgh could face possible criminal charges.

A woman says her boyfriend was accused of raping an 11-year-old Pittsburgh girl, convicted and sent to SCI Pittsburgh.

Now she says he’s part of a grand jury investigation into guards pointing out sex offenders and then sexually assaulting them or allowing other inmates to assault them, sometimes using a broom handle.

The woman says her boyfriend was identified by jail guards to other inmates as a sex offender as soon as he was placed in the jail.

“The guard actually told other inmates what he was in there for,” she said. “The guard let it out on the floor.”

“He told them that he’s in there for a sex crime,” she added.

Sources say an Allegheny County grand jury is looking into allegations a small group of vigilante corrections officers participated in the assaults in some manner.

“I understand there’s information out there, but I’m not permitted to talk about it at this point,” District Attorney Stephen Zappala said.

The investigation could take until late June or early July to be completed.




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