My time working in the local jail has been nothing short of adventurous each and every day. Every single day that I show up for work is completely different that the previous, and each day is getting far more dangerous too. The inmates ability to smuggle in contraband, weapons, and cellphones, only add to the problem for officers working inside.
On a normal day in the jail we can maintain order without too much in the way of incidents. Add into the mix the inmates using heroin or crack, and now you go from a normal inmate who can be restrained by two guards, to an unruly one who needs six or more officers to try and get him detained. My main goal each day is the safety of my team, and one of the ways we do that is by limiting the flow of drugs into the jail.
Each day I might surprise some of the inmates with a cell inspection, other times i will be at the front of the line checking visitors for any signs of contraband. These inmates get very good and finding ways to smuggle the drugs into the jail, then add into the mix that many low level gang members on the outside have no fear about getting caught and being paced in jail because it only solidifies their position in the gang.
Recently we had Securus Technologies do a system wide upgrade to the inmate communication system. The new system came with software that helped us to better understand and act on leads that were not evident in the past. Now when two gang members were discussing how and when the drugs will get into the jail, we act first instead of always being in reaction mode. The software allows us to catch the drugs before they get to the jail now.