• Florida corrections officer, wife accused of smuggling Quarter Pounders, phone into jail

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    A Florida corrections officer and his wife were arrested Thursday, accused of receiving illegal payments to smuggle a phone and fast food into a detention center, the Miami Herald reported.

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    Gary West Alford is charged with seven counts of unlawful compensation and introducing contraband into a county detention facility, the newspaper reported, citing a news release from the Miami-Dade County State Attorney's Office. His wife, Shantica Anastacia Alford, is charged with six counts of introduction of contraband into a county detention facility and one count of conspiracy.

    All of the charges are felonies, WPLG reported.

    According to the Herald, an inmate told investigators that he paid Shantica Alford $500 through a smartphone app for the delivery of McDonald’s Quarter Pounder hamburgers and lemon-pepper chicken wings into the jail.

    In a statement, Miami-Dade County State Attorney Katherine Fernandez said that "smuggling contraband into a jail facility can endanger the life of every correctional officer and inmate, while adding to the potential criminal activity of individuals already removed from our streets.”

    Miami-Dade Corrections and Rehabilitation Department spokesman Juan Diasgranados also released a statement that said his department was "firmly committed to providing a safe and secure environment for our staff and inmates."

    "We are saddened that the actions of one employee could tarnish the good work of the proud men and women of MDCR who dedicate their lives to ensuring the safety of the public," he said. "MDCR takes allegations of employee misconduct seriously and this arrest should send a strong message that employees involved in these types of crimes will not be tolerated and will be pursued to the fullest extent of the law."

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