An employee of the Lee County Jail moved her residency to the Itawamba County Jail, as an inmate.
On June 13, detention officer Cathy Barnett, of Amory, was arrested on the charge of introduction of contraband to a correctional facility. She has since bonded out, posting a $10,000 bond.
The inmate was Corey Carroll, of Mooreville, who was originally arrested and put in jail in October 2018.
“We had gotten some information we had an employee who was furnishing contraband to one of our inmates,” Lee County Sheriff Jim Johnson said.
All mail going in and out of the facility is monitored, as are phone calls. The entire facility is also overseen with video cameras 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
“We monitored the video and confirmed the tip was accurate,” Johnson said. “Our investigators checked the schedule to know when the employee was coming back to work. We set up a live-feed and watched a live delivery of the contraband.”
Most people, when they think of contraband they think of drugs or weapons. This was cigarettes, and that’s a felony.“The problem you look at is how it was being distributed. It may not be illegal to possess in the outside world but it’s illegal in jail. We do not allow tobacco products in our facility,” Johnson said.
“When you are an employee who builds up a bond with an inmate to the point of where you are jeapordizing the safety of this facility by unlocking doors so this inmate can ramble around. Then you’ve done more than brought cigarettes into the jail.”
And this particular inmate is not a firsttimer. Back in October of 2018 Carroll, 37, attacked a Lee County Jailer. Carroll already had been charged with four felonies. The detention officer was doing a bed check and when the officer reached down, Carroll jumped on the officer, striking him several times.
It’s thought the suspect (Carroll)was hallucinating from Flakka, a highly addictive designer drug that causes paranoia and psychosis.
Carroll’s crime spree started Oct. 2, 2018 when he forced his way into a Mooreville home, locked all the doors from the inside, and held an elderly woman, her daughter and a young girl hostage. He told the homeowner “someone is shooting at me.” He also said the apps on his phone were attacking him. Finally, one of the captives was able to call 911. He was still in the house when deputies arrived.
“He’s a dandy one,” Johnson said. “He’s very dangerous.”
Carroll told Johnson after attacking the jailer that this “wasn’t going to be the last incident.”
He was originally charged with three counts of felony kidnapping, one felony account of breaking and entering and felony assault on a police officer. This most recent incident could add 15 years to his already heavy load. Barnett, 59, could also face the 15 years.
The true connection between the two is still unclear.
“From what we can tell, there was a possibility of knowledge between his wife (or girlfriend) and this employee,” Johnson said.
Anyone with additional information on this case is asked to call the LCSD at 841-9040.