A total of 13 female officers were indicted on federal racketeering charges this week for their involvement in an elaborate Baltimore gang scandal. The officers, all employed at the Baltimore City Detention Center, are accused of aiding jailed leaders of the notorious Black Guerilla Family gang in exchange for money and sex.
Details of the indictment, made public on Tuesday, revealed a frightening scenario of female correctional officers furthering criminal gang activity behind bars. The 13 officers indicted are accused of smuggling drugs, cellphones, and various contraband into the hands of Black Guerilla Family members in an effort to further their illegal enterprises.
The 13 officers indicted allegedly brought the illegal contraband into the detention center by hiding the items in their underwear, hair, and shoes. Because of current prison search procedures in Baltimore, the smuggling of such items went unnoticed.
“This occurred because unlike [correctional officers] employed elsewhere in Maryland, [correctional officers] in Baltimore City are not required to remove their shoes when entering a facility,” explained FBI Special Agent Steve Vogt.
According to prosecutors, gang leaders used sex and money to control the female officers. Tavon White, a top member of the Black Guerilla Family, allegedly fathered children with four of the women while imprisoned at the facility.
Two of the indicted female officers reportedly have tattoos bearing Tavon White’s name, who is currently awaiting trial on an attempted murder charge.
Court documents allege that members of the gang were encouraged to pinpoint a particular type of correctional officer in order for the scheme to be successful. Members were taught to focus on women, who appeared to suffer insecurities or exhibit low self-esteem.
In addition to the 13 female officers, six inmates and five “outside suppliers” were also indicted on Tuesday for their involvement in the scandal. Tavon White is among the inmates included in the indictment and appears to be the primary ringleader behind the case.
Prosecutors released the transcript of a wiretapped phone call made by White earlier this year that paints a chilling picture of how much control he exerted over the individuals involved:
“This is my jail. You understand that? I’m dead serious … I make every final call in this jail … and nothing go past me, everything come to me … Any of my brothers that deal with anybody, it’s gonna come to me. You see what I am saying? Everything come to me. Everything. Before a [expletive] hit a [expletive] in the mouth, guess what they do? They gotta run it through me. I tell them whether it’s a go ahead, and they can do it or whether they hold back. Before a [expletive] stab somebody, they gotta run it through me … Anything that get done must go through me.”
Tavon White has since been transferred out of the Baltimore City Detention Center. The 13 officers indicted have been placed on unpaid leave while officials determine if their employment will be terminated.
[Top image via Shutterstock]