JEFFERSONVILLE, Ind. (WDRB) – Walking into the Clark County Jail, inmates lose communication with the outside world. That is unless they smuggle in a cell phone. Detectives say cell phones are the most common type of contraband because it allows inmates to make contact through jail walls.

“They can coordinate drug activity and things like that,” Detective Scottie Maples told WDRB.

In just two days, a jail investigator found six cell phones, heroin, suboxone strips, as well as synthetic marijuana. Detective Maples says inmates often receive these items when they have public contact during their court dates, but sometimes they take extreme measures.

“We have had instances where inmates busted windows out, which is very time consuming and very hard to do,” said Detective Maples.

With a new sheriff in town, Jamey Noel is cracking down on the contraband. In the past the department handled contraband internally and would take away privileges from inmates if caught. Now the jail is taking a stricter approach.

“We are going to prosecute all criminal offenses that we find inside the jail. We've been in coordination with the prosecutor's office and they're on board,” said Detective Maples.

A jail investigator position has been created to locate all contraband and keep it out. With no x-ray machine, investigations will focus on inmate tips, cell searches, and inspections of more than 500 inmates.

With cell phones being so popular, it's that item that will be on the top of the list to find.

“Any type of inmate to inmate communication through sections could be dangerous to officer safety, if they're setting something up, if they're trying to squeeze something past the officer, trying to get something into a section, if they're orchestrating some type of crime,” said Detective Maples.

He adds that when the phones are gone, the drugs will dry up.

It has yet to be announced who the jail investigator is, but Detective Maples says that person has been a corrections officer for eight years.

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