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Suwannee County correctional officer accused of sexual misconduct, unlawful compensation

Posted at 12:32 PM, Jul 13, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-13 12:45:03-04

LIVE OAK, Fla. (WTXL) — A correctional officer at the Suwanee Correctional Institution is facing multiple charges after investigators say she had an ongoing, sexual relationship with an inmate and even helped him evade arrest by letting him live in her home.

According to a probable cause report, investigators discovered that Cynthia Mash, a correctional officer at the Suwanee Correctional Institution, had an ongoing, sexual relationship with an inmate at the Columbia County Detention Facility.

When a captain with the Columbia County Sheriff's office was reviewing inmate email, they discovered that Mash had written "numerous messages" detailing a sexual relationship with the inmate while he was living with Mash at her home.

"This personal relationship between Mash and [the inmate] was formed February 18, 2020, while he was under supervision by FDC, and had an outstanding arrest warrant," the report stated.

While living together, the probable cause report said Mash benefited monetarily when the inmate gave her permission to use his food stamp card to "fill up the house."

When a warrant for violation of probation was issued for the inmate while he was living with Mash, investigators say Mash was aware but failed to report him and instead provided him with shelter and access to her car.

After the inmate was arrested on an outstanding warrant and incarcerated in Columbia County, investigators say Mash continued to communicate with him while on duty.

"During these messages, Mash did reveal institutional security information such as inmate locations, details concerning inoperative gates, and movement of officers at Suwannee Correctional Institution," the report read.

Based on the evidence, Mash was charged with accessory after the fact, unlawful compensation, sexual misconduct and official misconduct by the Florida Department of Corrections Officer of Inspector General.