Final Defendants, Including Former Correctional Officer, Sentenced for Prison Corruption Scheme at Jessup Correctional Institution
All 15 Defendants Charged in a Racketeering Conspiracy to Smuggle Contraband into the Prison Have Now Been Convicted and Sentenced
Greenbelt, Maryland – U.S. District Judge Theodore D. Chuang sentenced a former Correctional Officer, an inmate, and an outside “facilitator” this week in connection with a federal racketeering conspiracy at the Jessup Correctional Institution (JCI), involving inmates and outside facilitators paying bribes to correctional officers to smuggle contraband, including narcotics, alcohol, tobacco, and cell phones into the prison. With this week’s sentencings, all 15 defendants charged in this case have now been convicted and sentenced to up to more than five years in federal prison.
On August 10, 2022, Judge Chuang sentenced former Correctional Officer Dominique Booker, a/k/a “Star,” age 45, of Baltimore, to 27 months in federal prison, followed by three years of supervised release. On August 11, 2022, Judge Chuang sentenced inmate William Cox, a/k/a Dollar, age 45, to 33 months in prison, consecutive to his state term of imprisonment, followed by three years of supervised release; and today Judge Chuang sentenced facilitator Laurice Norfleet, age 44, of Taneytown, Maryland, to time served, and six months of home detention as part of three years of supervised release.
The sentences were announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Erek L. Barron; Special Agent in Charge Thomas J. Sobocinski, of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Baltimore Field Office; and Secretary Robert Green, of the Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services.
JCI is a maximum-security prison located in Jessup, Maryland.
According to the defendants’ plea agreements, Booker, Cox, and Norfleet conspired with other COs, including CO Chanel Pierce, inmates, and outside facilitators to smuggle contraband into JCI, including narcotics, alcohol, tobacco, and cell phones. According to their plea agreements and other court documents, COs accepted or agreed to accept payments from facilitators and/or inmates as consideration for smuggling contraband into JCI. Inmates acted as both wholesalers and retailers of contraband, often obtaining profits that far exceeded the profits that could be made by selling similar drugs on the street.
During the investigation, law enforcement intercepted phone calls and text messages in which the defendants discussed contraband to be smuggled into JCI, as well as the payment of bribes. Several of the inmate defendants, including Cox, had contraband cell phones, which they used to facilitate their smuggling activities. As detailed in her plea agreement, CO Booker conspired with inmate Cox, with whom she had a romantic relationship, and others, to smuggle contraband, including controlled dangerous substances, such as Suboxone, into JCI and then distribute the contraband to inmates. In January 2019, a search of Booker and her vehicle as she entered JCI revealed contraband, including plastic baggies containing the synthetic cannabinoid K-2, which she intended to smuggle into the prison.
As detailed in Norfleet’s plea agreement, she was the facilitator for her boyfriend and co-defendant, inmate Page Boyd. Norfleet admitted that on several occasions she obtained contraband, including controlled substances such as Suboxone which she provided to a co-conspirator in Baltimore. The co-conspirator then delivered the contraband to COs to smuggle into JCI for Boyd, on Norfleet’s behalf. Boyd then redistributed most of that Suboxone to other inmates at a significant profit. For example, during one jail call Boyd informed Norfleet that he was selling the Suboxone strips for $50 per strip inside JCI, far more than they sell for outside of prison.
Chanel Pierce, age 29, of Pikesville, Maryland, was previously sentenced to 21 months in federal prison for her role in the conspiracy and inmate Page Boyd, age 38, was sentenced to four years in federal prison, consecutive to his state term of imprisonment.
The U.S. Attorney expressed appreciation to the Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services, whose staff initiated the JCI investigation and have been full partners in this investigation.
This case is also part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) investigation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level criminal organizations that threaten the United States using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach that leverages the strengths of federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies against criminal networks.
United States Attorney Erek L. Barron commended the FBI and the Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services for their work in the investigation. Mr. Barron thanked Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher M. Rigali, who is prosecuting this case.
For more information on the Maryland U.S. Attorney’s Office, its priorities, and resources available to help the community, please visit www.justice.gov/usao-md and https://www.justice.gov/usao-md/community-outreach.
# # #