Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

October 8, 2013

Prison officer busted

By CHARLES OWENS
Bluefield Daily Telegraph

WELCH — A correctional officer at the McDowell County Holding Facility was arrested Monday and charged with allowing unauthorized items into the jail.

Stephanie Day, 26, of Pageton, was arrested and charged with one count of aiding the escape or violations concerning incarcerated inmates, according to Sgt. C.F. Kane of the West Virginia State Police Welch Detachment.

Kane said Day serves as a correctional officer at the county holding facility, which is located adjacent to the McDowell County Courthouse in Welch.

“She was allowing unauthorized items to be brought into the holding facility,” Kane said. “At this point, we can release it was unauthorized food and tobacco products.”

Day was arraigned Monday before Magistrate Danny Mitchell, who set bond at $500. Kane said the woman made bond, and was released.

Kane said a separate investigation involving the Southwest Regional Jail in Logan, which was conducted jointly by the Logan and Welch detachments of the state police, led to the subsequent investigation at the McDowell County Holding Facility.

“Through this (separate) investigation we got information that a correctional officer was allowing unauthorized items into the McDowell County Holding Facility,” Kane said. “Basically that investigation led us into this avenue of a separate investigation. It appears this was taking place with Officer Day for approximately six months. This investigation revealed that this correctional officer was, over a six-month period, allowing unauthorized food and tobacco products, which are prohibited, into the correctional center.”

Kane said he couldn’t comment on what Day was doing with the unauthorized items, or if they were delivered to inmates.

If convicted on the single misdemeanor count of aiding the escape or violations concerning incarcerated inmates, Day would face a fine of not less than $50 and not more than $500, and a period of incarceration of not less than three months and not more than 12 months.

Cheyan Eskins, 20, of Welch, was arrested last week as a result of the separate investigation at the Southwest Regional Jail in Logan and charged with aiding the escape or violations concerning incarcerated inmates. Kane said authorities intercepted a package at the regional jail in Logan containing tobacco and marijuana in the earlier investigation.

— Contact Charles Owens at cowens@bdtonline.com