WCI Officer Arrested
For Allegedly Trying to Deliver Contraband to an Inmate
Civilian and inmate also implicated thanks to outstanding detective work by WCI staff
Towson, MD (July 15, 2011)---A correctional officer at Western Correctional Institution (WCI) in Cumberland has been arrested and charged and is facing termination, after prison intelligence officers suspected he was attempting to bring contraband to an inmate and notified local and federal law enforcement authorities.
Officer Brian Hawk, 33, a nine-year Division of Correction veteran, was arrested this morning by the C3I task force, a multi-agency task force made up of state and federal entities. He faces charges of attempting to deliver cell phones and tobacco to an inmate. The Division of Correction has begun the process of placing the officer on leave with the intent to terminate his employment.
The case began thanks to alert investigative officers at WCI, who noticed irregularities surrounding the activities of a particular inmate and eventually called in the FBI to assist. The subsequent probe revealed an alleged scheme involving the inmate, a correctional officer, and a citizen on the outside.
Early Thursday morning, law enforcement officers intercepted what they believe was to have been a delivery of two cell phones with chargers, tobacco, and $1,000 cash to a WCI correctional officer. The citizen carrying the items---all of which are considered contraband inside a State prison--- confessed to being in the process of making a delivery to a WCI correctional officer, a delivery which law enforcement officers witnessed a few minutes later near the prison. Law enforcement then confiscated the items from the correctional officer as he arrived at WCI, and placed him under arrest. Because the investigation continues, the Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services (DPSCS) has no further information to release at this time.
DPSCS takes contraband very seriously, and has dramatically stepped-up efforts to slow its flow. From body orifice scanning devices to cell phone-sniffing K9s, beefed-up intelligence efforts and better training and front-gate search procedures, the Department has made it clear that contraband cannot be tolerated because of the danger it poses to staff and inmates alike.