Reporting Rochelle Ritchie
BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Big changes at the Baltimore City Detention Center, just days after the Feds discover sex, drugs and a lucrative business thriving inside the jail walls run by a notorious gang.
Rochelle Ritchie tells us the head of the department has literally moved his office to the jail to run things up close.
More than a dozen correctional guards remain suspended without pay. The remaining guards will now undergo lie detector tests as officials try to weed out corrupt officers.
Sex, drugs and jailhouse pregnancies. An FBI investigation reveals it all at the Baltimore City Detention Center.
Thirteen correctional guards, all female, are under federal indictment, accused of helping a known gang member, Tavon White, sneak drugs and cell phones into the jail so he and other gang members could sell the goods for profit.
WJZ tracked down Bernard Ralph, a former correctional officer with more than 30 years experience, including the Baltimore City Detention Center.
“A lot of chaos. The inmates seemed to walk around at will, do what they want at will,” he said.
For the last year, the FBI has listened to wiretapped cell phone conversations between inmates and guards. It led to the discovery of a lucrative smuggling operation and uncovered sexual relationships between correctional officers and inmates.
One of the accused guards, Antonia Allison, reportedly has ties to a gang, yet she’s worked there for seven years. Sources tell WJZ evidence against her wasn’t strong enough for them to take action.
WJZ tried to speak to her at her listed address, but were told she doesn’t live there.
Why anyone with an affiliation with a gang would be allowed to work at the jail boggles the minds of former correctional officers.
“The immaturity or lack of integrity in an officer will take that to a point where there’s no turning back,” said Ralph.
Since the investigation was exposed on Tuesday, four members of the Black Guerrilla Family gang have been moved to other facilities–including White–the alleged mastermind who got four guards pregnant.
Secretary Gary Maynard has moved his office to the detention center indefinitely and remaining employees will take lie detector tests starting Sunday.
The 25 indicted, including the 13 correctional guards, face charges of racketeering, money laundering and possession of drugs with the intent to distribute.
The Department of Public Safety and Corrections says it is doing an entire sweep of the detention center.