ST. LOUIS (KTVI) – The St. Louis Circuit Attorney’s Office charged a 24-year-old man for allegedly sneaking contraband to inmates inside the St. Louis City Justice Center in downtown.
Prosecutors said the defendant, Anthony Pitt, used his position as kitchen manager at the correctional facility to get cigarettes and narcotics—which included heroin, cocaine, and marijuana—to selected inmates.
In June 2014, the city department of corrections contacted police after discovering the contraband. During the course of their investigation, detectives determined that between October 2013 and June 2014, the families of six different inmates contacted Pitt and arranged for him to deliver the cigarettes and narcotics to the jail.
The family members agreed to pay Pitt in cash for each delivery, according to prosecutors.
On June 20, 2014, police took Pitt into custody. Prosecutors said Pitt admitted to taking $50 payments to deliver packages to inmates in the jail. He explained that he would take the package to the kitchen, remove the contraband, and place it inside a napkin. Pitt would then place said napkin on a special table where an inmate would retrieve it. That inmate would make sure the contraband got to the intended recipient.
Pitt faces nine criminal charges of smuggling contraband into a jail.
Commissioner of the St. Louis Corrections Department Dale Glass said his office contacted St. Louis police once they saw drugs turning up in the jail.
“The police took him in custody. We notified the vendor who terminated him, and of course, we banned or barred him from entering the jail,” Glass said.
The commissioner hopes the arrest will send a message.
“If you attempt to introduce drugs into this facility, you will be a resident in the jail upstairs yourself,” he said.
Glass said all employees undergo background checks on a regular basis. He said that also goes for employees of vendors. In this case, he said Pitt’s background check showed no signs of a risk.
“There were no red flags,” said Glass.
He said security procedures are constantly reviewed, but Glass did not identify any changes he felt needed to be made.