12 prison officers held with contraband this year

Twelve pris­ons of­fi­cers are among 21 peo­ple who have been ar­rest­ed so far this year for at­tempt­ing to smug­gle in con­tra­band items in­to the na­tion’s pris­ons.

The lat­est ar­rest came on Wednes­day when a Prison Of­fi­cer I with five years' ser­vice was ar­rest­ed at the Gold­en Grove Re­mand Yard try­ing to smug­gle in over 400 hand­made cig­a­rettes, three cell­phones with sim cards and a quan­ti­ty of mar­i­jua­na. The ar­rest was made at about 3.30 pm by spe­cial of­fi­cers as­signed to the Op­er­a­tions Unit.

Speak­ing with Guardian Me­dia yes­ter­day, Com­mis­sion­er of Pris­ons Ger­ard Wil­son said the dri­ve for tighter se­cu­ri­ty at the prison fa­cli­ties “is no joke.”

“Well, it would ap­pear that of­fi­cers and vis­i­tors might be tak­ing the ze­ro-tol­er­ance ap­proach to con­tra­band as com­i­cal. The Op­er­a­tions Unit has stepped up its dri­ve to ap­pre­hend these cul­prits and we are see­ing the re­sults,” Wil­son said.

Wil­son said three of­fi­cers were ar­rest­ed in April, two in March, one in Au­gust, four in Sep­tem­ber, one in Oc­to­ber and one (so far) this month. He again warned of­fi­cers who are in­tent on break­ing the law that they will be caught and brought to jus­tice.

Re­cent­ly, Wil­son placed a ban on vis­i­tors tak­ing in fruits for in­mates af­ter two vis­i­tors were held tak­ing mar­i­jua­na in­to the Gold­en Grove fa­cil­i­ty in ap­ples and grape­fruits. Vis­i­tors must now pur­chase fruits for pris­on­ers from the prison can­teen.

Reporter: Rhondor Dowlat

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