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Drugs Suspected for Five Inmate Deaths in Four Days in Arkansas

Five inmates were found dead in their cells at southeastern Arkansas’ Varner Unit prison during a four-day period in late August, three of them in a single day. The Arkansas Department of Corrections (DOC) announced that, between the morning of Sunday, August 26, and the early hours of the next day, inmates Edward Morris, 34,

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NY book ban to make prisons “safer” drew backlash

New York State Department of Correctional and Community Service (DOCCS) enacted Directive 4911A in December as a pilot project in three New York prisons. Under this Directive, prisoners may only receive packages from six approved vendors (a couple more vendors may be later added), and packages from family members are restricted to non-electrical musical instruments,

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Synthetic Marijuana Poses Big Problem for Bureau of Prisons

  Federal inmates get random urine tests for signs of use of drugs like heroin, cocaine or marijuana. But in the alcohol and drug rehabilitation web newsletter The Fix, former federal inmate turned-writer Seth Ferranti, who served time for an LSD offense, argues the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) has yet to come to grips with

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Atlanta Federal Prison Inmates Freely Come and Go

  In the late ’60s and early ’70s, late-night talk show host and comedian Dick Cavett used to tell stories about his none-too-bright cousin Norman. How dumb was Norman? Well, in one of a long series of failures, Norman set out to become a zookeeper, but couldn’t make a success of it. Why not? Because

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Smuggling Chaplain Shows BOP Has More to Do on Contraband

  The U.S. Bureau of Prisons (BOP) constantly battles to keep contraband – weapons, drugs, cellphones and other items – out of its correctional facilities. The dangers of weapons are obvious, but cellphones can be equally perilous, having been used to plot escapes and the intimidation – or worse – of witnesses, or to enable

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Forty Defendants, Including 24 Guards, Convicted in Widespread Corruption Scandal at Baltimore City Jail

  The confessed leader of a powerful gang inside the Baltimore City Detention Center was the government’s star witness at the trial of eight remaining defendants in widespread racketeering, drug smuggling, bribery, extortion and money laundering operation that resulted in criminal charges against dozens of guards, prisoners, jail workers, and other defendants. Tavon “Bulldog” White,

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Amount of Drugs a Factor for Departure Sentence

The Kansas Supreme Court reversed a prisoner’s sentence for possession of contraband – a small amount of marijuana – after it held the sentencing court misinterpreted its statutory authority by concluding it could not consider a downward departure to the presumptive criminal sentence. Prisoner Waddell Warren was convicted of introducing a controlled substance into a

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New York Prison Guard Pleads Guilty to Contraband Introduction Offenses

Curtis Drakes, 33, a former prison guard at the Mize Street Detention Facility has pleaded guilty to conspiring to introduce contraband into a correctional facility. According to court records, Drakes smuggled cell phones into the Mize Street Detention Facility for cash payments from inmates at the facility.  This conduct allegedly spanned the time period of

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