Innovative Drone Smuggling Attempt Thwarted Near Ridgeland Correctional Institute
Tavis Barnette, 42, and Joshua Bryan Lay, 33, faced charges this week after being caught using a drone to deliver illegal items into the Ridgeland Correctional Institute, according to WSPA.
Caught in the Act
The South Carolina Department of Corrections reported that Barnette and Lay were apprehended in a solar panel field near the prison.
They were allegedly operating a drone loaded with various Contraband items aimed at the correctional facility.
The interception of this drone thwarted their plans to smuggle cigarettes, cell phones, narcotics, and other prohibited materials into the prison.
Seizure of Contraband and Charges
Upon their arrest, officers confiscated not only the drone but also a significant quantity of illegal substances.
Among the seized items were 30 grams of methamphetamine, 10 grams of cocaine, and 873 grams of marijuana. The discovery of these narcotics underscores the severity of the offense.
Barnette faces multiple charges, including trafficking in methamphetamines, two counts of possession of cocaine with intent to distribute, possession of marijuana with intent to distribute, providing contraband to prisoners, and criminal conspiracy.
Similarly, Lay is charged with trafficking in methamphetamines, one count of possession of cocaine with intent to distribute, possession of marijuana with intent to distribute, providing contraband to prisoners, and criminal conspiracy.
A Growing Concern
This incident sheds light on the increasing challenge prisons face with the advent of Drone Technology. The use of drones for smuggling contraband into prisons represents a significant security concern, necessitating advanced countermeasures and vigilance from correctional facilities.
The successful thwarting of this smuggling attempt is a testament to the vigilance and preparedness of the South Carolina Department of Corrections.
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