Pike County sheriff’s investigators arrested two corrections officers just before the Wednesday lunch hour, accusing both of smuggling contraband into the jail.
Sheriff James Brumfield said the employees were fired upon their arrest.
Andy Ariel Carter, 30, 516 Lee St., Magnolia, was charged with four counts of bringing contraband into a correctional facility. He was released Wednesday afternoon after posting $2,500 bond.
Ebony Marie Moore, 37, of 1013 Peaches Lane, McComb, is charged with one count misdemeanor possession of drug paraphernalia inside a jail. She bonded out Wednesday afternoon on $750 bond.
Carter is accused of supplying inmates with cell phones.
Bellipanni said the new administration under Sheriff Brumfield was made aware of a number of allegations of guards introducing contraband into the jail.
He said detectives opened an investigation into the allegations, which prompted them to file charges. That led to the employees’ firing.
“We’re going to continue to work to ensure everybody abides by the oath they swore,” Bellipanni said.
Brumfield said the staff has conducted contraband sweeps in the jail that have recovered numerous items and displayed a box of recovered contraband including cell phones, cartons of cigarettes, heroin, marijuana and “stingers,” which are the partially removed exposed wiring inside of an electrical outlet used as makeshift cigarette lighters.
“It’s a sad day anytime we have to arrest one of our own,” Brumfield said. “But we won’t tolerate this kind of behavior or activity within the Pike County Sheriff’s Department or outside the Pike County Sheriff’s Department, and I’m really pleased with the work our guys are doing.”