An inmate pleads his case to Sheriff Heath Jackson during the shakedown.
Shakedown produces drugs, weapons, more
By DON FLETCHER
News Staff Writer
Escambia County Sheriff Heath Jackson and sheriff’s office investigators continued this week to search for the means through which numerous items of contraband — including weapons, drugs, tobacco and other banned items — found their way into the county jail.
According to press release issued last week by the sheriff, he and several deputies, jail staff and Brewton police officers conducted a three-hour surprise search of the Escambia County Detention Center’s cells, dormitories and common areas on Saturday, February 9.
The shakedown was a productive one that yielded a wide variety of illegal and banned substances.
Jackson said searchers turned up 13 cell phones, six phone chargers, four handmade knives, a quantity of pills, three bags of tobacco, one bag of Spice, four cigarette lighters, six books with hidden compartments and one tattoo gun.
No names have yet been released, but the sheriff said “numerous inmates” would likely be charged as a result of the raid. The probability also exists that several “free world” individuals would also be charged with helping smuggle the items into the facility, which was built to hold 125 inmates but now is bulging with more than 300.
The case is still under investigation, said the sheriff, who said shortly after being elected that eliminating or mitigating problems within the jail would be a priority item for his administration.