Cops Bust Drone Delivery of Porn DVDs, Drugs to Prison
2 men face charges; charges also expected against an inmate
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 25, 2015 11:43 AM CDT
This photo shows the contraband items and drone seized Saturday near Western Correctional Institution.   (Twitter/Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services)

(Newser) – Someone inside Maryland's Western Correctional Institution will be waiting a long time for his porn delivery. Officials say two men have become the first in the state to be charged with attempting to deliver contraband items to a prison via drone after they were found with a Yuneec Typhoon drone, tobacco, synthetic marijuana, prescription narcotics, pornographic DVDs, and a pistol, on a road adjacent to the maximum-security prison on Saturday. An investigation was triggered weeks ago, allowing officers to catch Thaddeus Shortz, 25, and Keith Russell, 29, attempting to smuggle the items into the facility 120 miles west of Baltimore, police tell WUSA. Charges are also expected against an inmate suspected of working with the men, who had contraband items in his cell.

The drone's cargo capacity was enough to lift all the contraband items, except the gun, though larger drones could do that job. "That's my biggest fear," says Stephen Moyer of the Maryland Department of Public Safety. "The use of these drones to bring this type of contraband into a facility is very, very troubling, and we're going to address it." For starters, Moyer plans to ask the General Assembly to fund drone-detection technology at some state prisons, at a cost of about $400,000 per facility; some 20 state prisons could be eligible. Officials say similar cases of prison smuggling attempts with drones have been reported in other states. Last month, a brawl started after a package containing heroin, marijuana, and tobacco, was dropped in a prison yard in Ohio, reports the Baltimore Sun.
 

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