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Smuggled phones provide digital “escape”

Prison inmates across the country have found a new way to order “hits” from behind bars — by using smuggled cell phones.

A recent article in Wired magazine profiled an alarming trend in correctional facilities all over the world, revealing that in recent years thousands of cell phones have been confiscated from inmates on lockdown — even those on death row.  This includes the nearly 1,000 cell phones that were confiscated in Maryland state prisons last year.

Organized riots, witness assassinations and even escapes have all resulted from this illegal cell phone use, but correctional officers are constantly working on new ways to stop this growing trend.

Everything from cell signal sensors to phone sniffing dogs have been used to discover illegal phones, but even as the justice system gets more inventive, so do the inmates.

Phones have been discovered in toilet pipes, peanut butter jars and even an inmate’s “keister.” Prisoners will go to extreme lengths to maintain this invaluable connection to the outside world, and often outside criminal activities.

According to one Texas state senator, an obvious solution would be to jam the signals, but this is illegal under the 1934 Communications Act. Should a special exception be made to combat this dangerous mobile phone activity?

One comment

  1. Who would have ever thought the word “keister” would appear in the Maryland Daily Record?