Former corrections officer facing charges after allegedly bringing drugs into Allegheny County Jail

ALLEGHENY COUNTY, Pa. — Former Allegheny County Jail corrections officer Ray Toomey could end up inside of a cell himself, if convicted on charges that he was smuggling drugs to an inmate.

“He’s looking at at a two-year prison sentence if he’s convicted,” said Toomey’s defense attorney, Casey White.

Investigators say Toomey was giving K-2, which is synthetic marijuana, to an inmate.

Police say that inmate’s nephew paid Toomey $2,500 to pass off the drugs.

“Unfortunately, these correctional officers deal with this type of manipulation on a daily basis. Constantly, inmates are trying to manipulate them into making poor decisions, and obviously Ray made a poor decision,” White added.

However, Lt. Brett Whittenberger, who oversees internal affairs at the jail and was the officer who questioned Toomey, says that’s not an excuse.

“I believe the inmates are always attempting to work their angle to manipulate correctional officers and staff to bring stuff in, but it’s incumbent on the officer to reject those calls to engage in criminal activity,” said Whittenberger.

The executive director of the Citizen Police Review Board is questioning why Toomey was hired at the jail.

As we’ve reported, Toomey resigned from the Pittsburgh Police Department in 2017, amid an investigation after video surfaced of him making a violent arrest in the Southside.

“What’s interesting is, the background check didn’t red flag the incident that he’s fairly well-known for down in the Southside,” said Citizen Police Review Board Executive Director Beth Pittinger.

We asked the jail spokesperson if the warden was aware of Toomey’s past. A spokesperson told us they don’t comment on personnel issues, but that “they expect the highest standards from all jail employees. Contraband is not tolerated.”

County police agree.

“The officers are criminal justice professionals and they’re not to engage in criminal activity, period,” said Whittenberger.

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