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Officer charged with smuggling drugs into prison

Officer charged with smuggling drugs into prison

J.R. Oppenheim
September 07, 2017 06:07 PM

LOS LUNAS, N.M. -- A corrections officer faces charges after a New Mexico State Police spokesperson said he smuggled drugs into a prison.

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Manuel Romero, 21, was arrested for bringing contraband into the Central New Mexico Correctional Facility in Los Lunas. According to NMSP Lt. Elizabeth Armijo, video showed Romero bringing an inmate an item in his cell. That inmate later had a drug overdose, Armijo said.

Prison officers found narcotics in the cell and notified state police Wednesday afternoon. Armijo said personnel questioned Romero and learned his personal cell phone, which he was not supposed to have at the facility, had text messages about Romero taking drugs into the prison.

Armijo said Romero admitted to NMSP investigators he was paid at least three times for giving drugs to an inmate, and that led to the inmate's overdose.

"The actions by this correctional officer are disgraceful and totally reprehensible, and in no way reflect the character and professionalism of our correctional staff who work in dangerous situations every day to keep all New Mexicans safe," New Mexico Corrections Secretary David Jablonski said. "We have zero tolerance for anyone smuggling drugs or other contraband into our facilities and we will ensure this individual is prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law."

Credits

J.R. Oppenheim

Copyright 2017 KOB-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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