Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Inmate Work Crew Allowed Sex, Drugs

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Inmate Work Crew Allowed Sex, Drugs

Article excerpt

A city employee was arrested yesterday and charged with taking

money and goods in exchange for allowing the work-release

inmates he supervised access to prostitutes, drugs and alcohol,

police said.

Roosevelt Williams, 36, of the 4000 block of Scott Woods Drive

South was charged with unlawful compensation for official

behavior yesterday. He was held without bail in Duval County

jail last night pending his first court appearance today.

"The crew was getting marijuana, cocaine, alcohol and sexual

favors while they were working," detective Bill Baer said.

Baer said Williams sometimes would drive the Montgomery

Correctional Center inmates across the city to get drugs and

prostitutes. He said the prisoners also drank beer and ate fast

food, instead of the prison-issued lunches. The prisoners paid

for these things with money and drugs that family and friends

gave them while they were at work sites, Baer said.

This behavior occurred during the last few months, Baer said.

Williams, who has no criminal record, never took drugs or drank

alcohol on the job, Baer said. Williams would use drugs

prisoners gave him to pay for sex with prostitutes during work

and accepted beer from prisoners that he drank after work, the

detective said.

Baer said prisoners he interviewed said they also paid Williams

up to $150 a day in cash. Williams denied receiving any money

from the inmates, police said.

John Rutherford, corrections director in the Jacksonville

Sheriff's Office, said Williams was in charge of one of three

prisoner work crews supervised only by city Public Works

Department personnel. Williams' crew was made up of eight to 10

medium- and minimum-security prisoners.

For the most part, Williams had the same prisoners in his crew

each day, Rutherford said. Those prisoners had mostly committed

property and other non-violent crimes and were considered low

risks for escape. …

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