Documents obtained by Channel 3 News reveal a disturbing incident at the Geauga County Jail.
On January 28th, a 27-year-old man allegedly bypassed the department’s scanner during booking and successfully snuck in pills and heroin in his underwear.
This week, he was arraigned on felony charges, along with other inmates with whom he allegedly shared the drugs.
In December, Geauga County Sheriff Scott Hildenbrand said his department had purchased a new state-of-the-art body scanner, similar to those once used in airports, to detect that kind of contraband.
The machines can cost $100,000 or more.
But in this case, sources say it was not used, since the department’s policies and procedures required training that had yet to happen.
Other departments certainly know the cost of waiting.
Last year, an inmate overdosed and died at the Lake County Jail. It was the second overdose case in as many years.
The department did not have a body scanner.
“When an event happens like that, people seek to bring litigation against the jail and say ‘Why didn’t you prevent this? You should’ve known they were an addict,’” Deputy Chief Frank Leonbruno said at the time.
He added that without a court order to physically inspect inmates, it can be difficult to know who may be hiding something.
A spokesperson for the Geauga County Jail said they currently strip search inmates at booking time if there is probable cause to suggest they may be hiding something.