Former Florida prison guard accused of working with inmate to smuggle contraband

Former Florida prison guard accused of working with inmate to smuggle contraband.png
Posted at 1:00 PM, Nov 09, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-09 08:02:06-05

MONTICELLO, Fla. (WTXL) - Authorities say a prison guard accepted money from an inmate as they planned to smuggle drugs and other contraband into a local correctional institution.

The arrest of Ladeja Ra'Shawn Wade for unlawful compensation and official misconduct was announced Thursday by the Florida Department of Corrections’ Office of the Inspector General.

Wade was transported to the Jefferson County Jail. She last worked at JCI on July 1.

Documents say numerous phone calls occurred between the officer and the inmate.

"It is reasonable to believe that the details of smuggling contraband and/or narcotics were planned during these calls," a probable cause affidavit said, "and the monies given to Officer Wade were for these transactions."

On or about May 1 through June 30 the court document said, Wade accepted money from an inmate on three occasions. 

Documents say Wade electronically sent and received 271 pages of messages into JCI using a cellphone. The messages implicated her in assisting in planning crimes, the court document said.

On June 27, an investigator wrote Wade lied during an interview when she was asked if she was doing business with, or taking money from inmates. On July 12, the inmate was searched before being transported from JCI, where he was concealing a contraband cellphone.

Rather than give the staff the phone, he broke it into pieces. However, officials were able to recover the cellphone's data thanks to a forensic cellphone lab company.

The text messages and pictures sent from the inmate to Wade included a hand-drawn map of JCI's grounds marking places, so-called "drops," to leave contraband items and such places in Monticello.

The two also discussed the selling of narcotics, how much could be made per ounce sold, and ways to get around JCI's metal detector to smuggle in contraband.