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Press Release

Correctional Officer Charged with Accepting Bribes to Smuggle Contraband into William E. Donaldson Correctional Facility

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Alabama

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – A former corrections officer at the William E. Donaldson Correctional Facility has been charged for his role in a conspiracy to smuggle cell phones, controlled substances, and other contraband items to inmates at the facility, announced U.S. Attorney Prim F. Escalona and U.S. Secret Service Special Agent in Charge Patrick Davis.

A two-count information filed in U.S. District Court yesterday charges former Alabama Department of Corrections (“ADOC”) Correctional Officer Wilson Brian Clemons, also known as “Mario Lopez” and “My Granddaddy Otis,” 32, of Jasper, with one count of conspiracy and one count of using a facility in interstate commerce in furtherance of an unlawful activity. 

According to the charging document, between November 7, 2021, and November 23, 2021, Clemons abused his position as a corrections officer and agreed to accept bribes in exchange for smuggling contraband items into Donaldson. The charging document alleges that Clemons used a fake name to create an account with the mobile payment service Cash App so that he could accept bribe payments from inmates and their associates anonymously.

According to the plea agreement, also filed yesterday, Clemons has agreed to plead guilty to both charged counts. The plea agreement states that Clemons was stopped outside of Donaldson on November 23, 2021, after he attempted to bring cell phones, marijuana, Xanax, cigars, and scales into the facility. Clemons has agreed to forfeit the money he made from the conspiracy.

The maximum penalty for conspiracy and use of a facility in interstate commerce in furtherance of illegal activity is five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

The U.S. Secret Service Cyber Fraud Task Force investigated the case. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Edward J. Canter and John M. Hundscheid are prosecuting the case. The ADOC Law Enforcement Services Division  assisted in the investigation.

An information contains only charges. The defendants are presumed innocent unless and until they are proven guilty.  


Updated November 4, 2022