Borrego Sun - Since 1949

Calif. State Prison Counselor - Drug Smuggling Ring

 

Last updated 5/10/2016 at 3:17pm



Angela Carr, a 44-year-old Moreno Valley resident and former supervisory drug counselor at Calipatria State Prison, located not far from the Salton Sea, has been charged along with seven others, by a federal grand jury on suspicion of allegedly smuggling methamphetamine, heroin and marijuana into the prison.

As a supervisory drug counselor at the prison, Carr's position involved routinely meeting with inmates who were attending the prison’s substance abuse program. Carr allegedly, showed up for work one day "reeking of marijuana".

Federal authorities released a news statement stating that the drugs and numerous cellphones that were allegedly smuggled into the prison by the drug counselor, had an estimated prison value of nearly $1.2 million. Authorities called the smuggling conspiracy the "largest prosecuted in connection with a prison in the Southern District of California".

Four of her alleged co-conspirators are inmates, one of those inmates, D’Mondo Burns, was a drug counseling mentor to other inmates, according to authorities. This is a first for the San Diego Federal Bureau of Investigations and California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation officials who according to the news release, have never before targeted not only the corrupt prison official, but also the inmates and their conspirators on the outside.

“While occupying a position of trust, Ms. Carr is alleged to have facilitated the distribution of drugs within the prison population at Calipatria State Prison, thereby undermining the correction and rehabilitation of its inmates,” said FBI Special Agent in Charge (SAC), Eric S. Birnbaum. “The smuggling of contraband is not only a threat to the integrity of our prison system, but to the safety of the American public which is why the FBI is committed to rooting out corruption at all levels within our prison system.”

Carr is suspected of receiving the drugs from three women who have relationships with inmates at Calipatria. According to the search warrant, Carr would allegedly meet the women in parking lots of bowling allies and big-box stores in Palmdale and Moreno Valley to receive the drugs and contraband. Carr would then bring the controlled substances into the prison, concealed in chip bags, Quaker Oatmeal boxes and cookie and coffee containers, allege authorities.

The indictment also alleges that Carr smuggled as many as 40 cellphones at a time into the prison which were sold on and used to coordinate criminal activity both inside and outside the facility.

Authorities allege Carr smuggled drugs and contraband into the Calipatria prison on at least three occasions. In return, she was paid approximately $3,500 in total.

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