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Louisville jail contract worker accused of drug smuggling

Exterior of Louisville Metro Corrections.
Roberto Roldan

A food service contract employee working at the downtown Louisville jail was arrested Friday for allegedly smuggling drugs into the facility. 

Metro Corrections officials said they discovered correspondence between Marissa Brown, 51, and a person incarcerated at the jail. A search of Brown’s belongings allegedly turned up 60 pills, including the opiates Hydrocodone and Lortab. Brown faces three charges: possession of a controlled substance, smuggling contraband and having a controlled substance not in its original container. She’s currently being held on a $35,000 bail, according to court records.

“[Louisville Metro Department of Correction] is committed to maintaining a safe environment for inmates and staff and will work relentlessly to eliminate dangerous narcotics,” Jail Director Jerry Collins said in a statement. “If anyone, employee or inmate, attempts to introduce dangerous contraband into the facility, we will make every effort to prosecute them to the fullest extent of the law.”

A person incarcerated at the jail was also arrested in connection with the investigation into Brown. Internal Metro Corrections investigators later conducted a full search of the food service area and said they found multiple baggies with suspected fentanyl. 

The jail has looked to crack down on drug smuggling after eight people have died while in custody since November, some of which were suspected to be drug overdoses. 

Former Jail Director Dwyane Clark retired last month following calls for his ouster. Since then, the jail has deployed new body scanners and is now photocopying mail delivered to the facility. The jail is also in the process of putting together a canine unit focused on drugs. 

Roberto Roldan is the City Politics and Government Reporter for WFPL. Email Roberto at rroldan@lpm.org.

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