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Contraband Arrests at Multiple State Prisons

As of July 2010, The GDC Office of Professional Standards, in conjunction with local & federal law enforcement partners, have investigated or arrested approximately 898 staff and civilians for introducing contraband into prisons throughout the state.

On December 2, Lee State Prison Correctional Officer Markel Pierce was arrested by Lee County Sheriff’s Department for violation of oath by a public officer and conspiracy to commit a crime of items prohibited for possession by an inmate, after crossing the guard lines with an unknown amount of tobacco. 

On December 10, Visitor Felicia Sandavol was attempting to enter Ware State Prison for visitation when the Portal Sergeant detected a strong odor of marijuana. The Sergeant asked Visitor Sandavol’s consent to be searched and she denied consent. A Canine Handler was then contacted, and upon his arrival, visitor Sandavol gave consent for her vehicle to be searched. The following contraband was discovered: 1.9 grams of a marijuana cigarette, 13.1 grams methamphetamine, 3.6 grams loose marijuana, 3 unopened cellular phones, 4 cellular phone individually wrapped in clear plastic wrap, 3 bottles of alcohol, a 9 millimeter semi automatic handgun and 2 bundles of tobacco weighing 93.6 grams wrapped in white electrical tape. Visitor Sandoval then gave consent for her person to be searched but no further contraband was discovered. Visitor Sandavol was arrested by Ware County Sheriff’s Office.

On December 11, at Dodge State Prison, an officer observed visitor Sandra Scoggins pass an unknown substance to an inmate during visitation. The inmate was searched and the following contraband was detected on his person: 9 balls of tobacco weighting 1.4 ounces and 6 capsules of an unknown substance. Visitor Scoggins was searched but no further contraband was detected. Her vehicle was then searched, and 3 bottles of beer were found in a grocery bag. Visitor Scroggins admitted that she brought in the contraband and was arrested by Dodge County Sheriff’s Office.

On December 11, at Johnson State Prison, Visitor Joseph Vandall was arrested after he attempted to introduce contraband through visitation. The contraband was detected when on officer searched the inmate he was visiting after visitation concluded. 2.88 grams of loose tobacco were found on the inmate’s person. Visitor Vandall was arrested by Johnson County Sheriff's Office. 

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