The Nevada Department of Corrections (NDOC) reports one correctional officer has been arrested and four inmates will be referred for prosecution with new charges.
An investigation uncovered a conspiracy to bring cell phones and drugs into Southern Desert Correctional Center in Indian Springs, Nevada. Two cell phones were recovered within the institution and sixteen were seized by investigators prior to entering the prison.
Inmate Michael McNeil, #65311, and Jamel Harris, #1125934 organized the scheme to provide cellular phones and controlled substances to correctional officers who allegedly delivered the items to the inmates inside the institution. Further investigation implicated the above inmates as well as inmate Jesus Chavarria #1117998.
Correctional Officer Michael James was arrested and booked into the Clark County Detention Center for one count each of Knowing/Attempting to Furnish a Portable Telecommunications Device to a State Prisoner, Misconduct of a Public Officer and Asking or Receiving a Bribe.
Bail was set at $11,000. James is no longer employed by the Department of Corrections.
Endrel Pope, who was out on parole, was taken into custody and booked into the Clark County Detention Center on a no bail hold on two counts of Violation of Parole. He has been returned to the custody of the Department of Corrections.
Shawn Yazzie, another associate arrested for his involvement in the scheme, was booked into Clark County Detention Facility for Conspiracy and Communications with a Prisoner.
This investigation was initiated by the Interim Director E.K. McDaniel and is being conducted by the Inspector General’s Office with the assistance of the Nevada Department of Public Safety, Office of Parole and Probation, local law enforcement agencies and the Nevada Office of the Attorney General.
The investigation is ongoing and additional charges are anticipated; more information will be forthcoming.