A former prison officer who embarked on a relationship with an inmate and tried to smuggle drugs has been jailed.
Jade Martina McCarthy, 27, has been sentenced to 27 months in prison after admitting misconduct in a public office and conveying illegal items into prison.
McCarthy appeared at Sheffield Crown Court today (Monday November 13) to be sentenced after pleading guilty to two counts of misconduct in a public office and one count of conveying a List A article into prison.
McCarthy, of Bentley, was employed as a prison officer at HMP Doncaster in 2015 when colleagues suspected she may have been in a relationship with a serving prisoner. The prison reported concerns to South Yorkshire Police’s Prison Investigation Team, who arrested McCarthy in November 2015.
Upon arrest, she was found to have a blister pack of tramadol in her handbag within the prison. When her home was searched, a number of mobile phones were also recovered.
Telecoms enquiries revealed numerous contact between McCarthy and the inmate, including nude photos of the prisoner on her phone.
Acting detective sergeant Alex Dorlin from the Prison Investigation Team said: “McCarthy admitted being in a relationship with a prisoner once arrested and has accepted responsibility for her dishonest and disappointing actions.
“As a prison officer, the public quite rightly expect a high standard of behaviour and McCarthy did not conduct herself in a professional, ethical or legal manner at all.
“Taking a pack of tramadol, an addictive painkiller, into a prison environment is not only reckless but potentially highly dangerous.
“The four phones recovered from McCarthy’s home were the small Sonika phones which are notoriously used in prison due to their size making them easy to conceal. The phones had been wrapped in cling film, clearly indicating they were destined to be smuggled into prison as well.
“She now faces time behind bars to consider the consequences of her criminal behaviour.”