You read it right- twenty drones were found inside HMP Liverpool in the United Kingdom. A recent publication by the Independent Monitoring Board (IMB) revealed a substantial presence of illicit contraband within HMP Liverpool in the preceding year. The report indicated that, out of 243 completed cell searches, almost half yielded positive results for various forms of contraband.

From the 243 searches completed within cells, 117 had a positive find for contraband i.e., 48% of searches. Some of the illicit items found in the prison include:
• 236 mobile phones
• 194 chargers
• 57 weapons
• 160 SIM cards
• 75.5 liters fermenting liquid
20 drones
• 48 new psychoactive substances sheets
• 4488g cannabis
• 267g white powder
• 126 steroid tablets
• 5712g tobacco

The report also reported a total of 191 drone sightings occurred within the prison premises. Over the course of the year, multiple police operations were conducted, resulting in arrests. As a consequence of these operations, at least one conviction has been secured thus far, with additional court cases scheduled to take place in the near future.

Drone Contraband Drop at Georgia Prison Leads to High-Speed Chase

On November 9, 2023, at 11:27 P.M., Washington County Deputies (Georgia) received a notification about a drone drop at Washington State Prison in Davisboro, Georgia. Upon investigation, deputies identified a suspicious vehicle in the vicinity of Highway 231 and S. Sparta Davisboro Rd.

A Washington County Deputy made an attempt to stop the vehicle, but the driver refused to comply. The pursuit continued onto Highway 88, spanning several miles, and extended into Jefferson County. Due to the vehicle’s speed, hazardous driving behavior, and the commission of multiple felonies, the deputy decided to execute a PIT maneuver. The PIT maneuver was carried out within Jefferson County, where it was deemed safe, and no other vehicles were present. The vehicle spun, exited the roadway, and ended up in the ditch and embankment area. Subsequently, the Georgia State Patrol was called in to handle the accident.

Upon inspection of the vehicle, a drone and other contraband were discovered. The Georgia Department of Corrections also located the contraband dropped earlier at Washington State Prison. Further investigation revealed that one of the individuals arrested, Jonquez Jackson, had an outstanding felony warrant for Aggravated Assault on a Police Officer in Richmond County. Another individual, Travis Calloway, faced an outstanding warrant from Richmond County for Possession of Dangerous Drugs and Felony Items prohibited by inmates in Tattnall County. Both Jackson and Calloway are confronting numerous felony charges, with Jackson also facing multiple traffic charges.

Photo Collage- Wrecked Car, Drone Controller, Drone, and bags of suspected contraband
Images courtesy of the Washington County (GA) Sheriff’s Office

Two Men Arrested in South Carolina Suspected of Trafficking Methamphetamines

On Sunday, November 5, 2023, the Marlboro County Sheriff’s Office (South Carolina) Uniformed Patrol Division responded to a report of a drone near Evans Correctional Institution. The Corrections Officer reported observing the drone heading back toward Wafer Rd. behind the prison and mentioned conducting a perimeter check to investigate potentially dropped items.

During the perimeter check, a Deputy observed a vehicle traveling on the roadway. Given the timing of the incident and its proximity, a lawful traffic stop was initiated on the vehicle. The driver, identified as Larry Purvis Jr., was confirmed to be wanted in Carroll County, Georgia.

Upon conducting an inventory of the vehicle, Deputies discovered a bag containing a crystal-like substance between the driver’s side seat and the center console, suspected to be methamphetamine. The vehicle’s passenger, Donald Gurley, was also taken to the Marlboro County Detention Center, where both individuals were charged with Trafficking of Methamphetamine.

Are you interested in seeing more sector-specific resources for prisons? Check out C-UAS Hub Corrections for important articles and resources.

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