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4,130 cellphones confiscated in California prisons this year

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  • 4,130 cellphones confiscated in California prisons this year

    Thousands of cellphones confiscated in state prisons
    October 1, 2009 | 8:21 pm

    Cellphone State prison officials have confiscated 4,130 contraband cellphones this year, more than all those seized in the previous three years combined, according to an internal report released today.

    The findings sparked concern among legislators that the proliferation of cellphones in state lockups is a growing security problem.

    More than 100 illegal phones were discovered at the California Institution for Men in Chino, including 10 in August, according to the report from Matthew Cate, head of the state prisons system. But he said there is no evidence that inmates used the devices during a riot that occurred there Aug. 8.

    “Investigations conducted within California prisons have supported allegations [that] cellphones have been used by incarcerated felons to participate in criminal activity,” wrote Cate, secretary of the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.

    Crimes committed by inmates using cellphones have included the planning of escapes, restraining order violations, use of stolen credit cards to purchase inmate quarterly packages and the coordination of smuggling contraband into prisons, Cate said.

    Two years ago, state Sen. Alex Padilla (D-Pacoima) proposed legislation that would have made it a crime for inmates to possess cellphones in prison. He also proposed subjecting all prison visitors and employees to more rigorous screening, including the use of metal detectors. His ideas were shelved because of the state’s budget problems.

    “We knew this was a problem two years ago, and it seems to be growing exponentially worse,” Padilla said.

    In his report, Cate acknowledged that a test program that planned to use “airport-style screening” at prison entrances had been planned. But he said that “due to the current budget crisis, this pilot program has been placed on hold.”

    —Patrick McGreevy (LA Times) in Sacramento
    Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored. -- Aldous Huxley
    Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity. -- Albert Einstein

  • #2
    Aren't these guys subject to search upon introduction to the facility? How the hell wouldn't somebody catch something like this?

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    • #3
      Originally posted by COEast View Post
      Aren't these guys subject to search upon introduction to the facility? How the hell wouldn't somebody catch something like this?
      A very good question. They could be smuggled in by lawyers. I have also read of cell phones being smuggled in by guards.
      Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored. -- Aldous Huxley
      Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity. -- Albert Einstein

      Comment


      • #4
        All prison and jail facilities need to scrap contact visitation. My jail did and our contraband levels plummeted.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Naelbis View Post
          All prison and jail facilities need to scrap contact visitation. My jail did and our contraband levels plummeted.
          Well, a good point no doubt, but our facility requires us to strip search each inmate after ANY contact visit. Be it an attorney, pastor, special family member visit, etc. I wouldn't put it past those defense attorneys though...

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          • #6
            Originally posted by COEast View Post
            Well, a good point no doubt, but our facility requires us to strip search each inmate after ANY contact visit. Be it an attorney, pastor, special family member visit, etc. I wouldn't put it past those defense attorneys though...
            We strip search before and after any visit be it contact or non contact. We still get contraband inside.


            Some of it is keestered by outs workers and some is brought in by staff.

            Fact of life----------------stopping it is almost impossible .

            My understanding is that even the "supermax" institutions where there is almost no inmate/visit/staff contact gets contraband in........
            Since some people need to be told by notes in crayon .......Don't PM me with without prior permission. If you can't discuss the situation in the open forum ----it must not be that important

            My new word for the day is FOCUS, when someone irritates you tell them to FOCUS

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Iowa #1603 View Post
              Fact of life----------------stopping it is almost impossible .
              Sadly, I'd have to agree with you. That's really all there is to it.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Naelbis View Post
                All prison and jail facilities need to scrap contact visitation. My jail did and our contraband levels plummeted.
                this^^^

                i don't understand why people think it should be a right while incarcerated to have contact visits. that's the easiest way for a prisoner to get contraband i can think of. our prison did house min security farm crew though, and they were getting tons of contraband from working on the farm.

                EDIT:for what it's worth, i realized how dirty staff members were when I did IA as well. They were responsible for lots of the contraband introduction into the facilites.

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