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Contraband Interdiction Efforts 4th Quarter

Gregory C. Dozier
Director of Public Affairs: 
Joan Heath
Contact Name: 
Gwendolyn Hogan
Contact Email:
January 26, 2017

GDC Contraband Interdiction Efforts Continue in Fourth Quarter 2016

More than 16,000 items seized

FORSYTH, Ga. – In keeping with our commitment to eradicate the state’s prison system of contraband, the Georgia Department of Corrections (GDC) seized a total of 16,262 items of contraband from inside our prisons in the fourth quarter of 2016. Our efforts to eliminate contraband have been made possible through our continuing improvements and enhancements of our front line and technological methods, as well as our full facility shakedowns.

“At the close of 2016, our dedicated officers and employees intercepted close to 40,000 items of contraband,” said Commissioner Dozier. “Last year was a good example of our commitment to stay ‘tough on crime from within’, and this year will be no different. If anything, we will strengthen and continue to raise the bar on our efforts.”

Through the collaboration of our Office of Professional Standards, GDC Tactical Squads and K9 Units, the following items were confiscated between October and December 2016:

  • 2,758 cell phones
  • 3,985 cell phone chargers
  • 1,908 handmade weapons
  • 10,380.751 grams of marijuana (1,083 bags/balloons)
  • 121,885.2 grams of tobacco (4,114 bags/balloons)
  • 1,167.831 grams of methamphetamine (312 bags/balloons)
  • 61.4 grams of cocaine (24 bags/balloons)
  • 1,807 pills
  • 7,906.466 ounces of alcohol (144 bottles)
  • 89 syringes
  • 38 SIM/SD cards

The agency implemented an array of methods in 2016 to assist with preventing contraband from entering our prisons. These efforts included additional staff training on contraband detection, improved package screening of incoming items to our prisons, enhanced screening of our staff during shift change, the addition of cell phone detention canines, secure evidence storage procedures, BOSS scanners, cell sense devices, through-body scanners, thermal imaging, perimeter netting, and infrared cameras.

In 2016, the agency made a promise to conduct concerted shakedown operations at all of its 33 state prisons. At the end of 2016, we successfully accomplished that pledge to the public and have renewed that promise to continue these focused operations for the foreseeable future.

A total of 52 shakedowns were completed in 2016, and contributed to the agency’s overall contraband interdiction efforts resulting in a total of 38,780 items seized. During the fourth quarter alone, shakedowns resulted a total of 1,104 items seized.

These concerted 12-hour shakedown operations average 400 tactical squad members, 15-20 investigators, and 10-15 K9 handlers. Fourth quarter seizures included:

  • 221 handmade weapons
  • 116 cell phones
  • 58 cell phone chargers
  • 2,583.3 grams of tobacco (28 instances)
  • 488.5 grams of marijuana (40 instances)
  • 53.5 grams of methamphetamine (6 instances)
  • 611 unidentified pills
  • 1 bundle of Green Dot information
  • 1 Pay Pal number
  • 13 bundles of financial information
  • 1,497.6 ounces of homemade alcohol (6 instances)
  • 1 syringe
  • 2 SIM/SD cards

“We will continue to intensify our contraband interdiction efforts, making it clear to staff and offenders that we will not stop and will move to prosecute those who attempt to disrupt the security and safety of our prisons,” said Commissioner Dozier.

For more information on the GDC call 478-992-5247 or visit

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