Federal Prisoner and his Fiancée Indicted for running an Inmate Taxi Service
ATLANTA – Federal inmate Deldrick D. Jackson and Kelly M. Bass have been arraigned on charges of conspiring to assist inmates to escape from the U.S. Penitentiary in Atlanta and for escaping and assisting in the escape from prison.
“Jackson and Bass allegedly ran a scheme that resulted in inmates escaping from Atlanta’s federal prison camp into the community,” said U. S. Attorney John Horn. “Inmates who escape from custody present a threat to the safety of the citizens in the area. Safety concerns also arise when inmates return with contraband to feed a thriving black market.”
“The federal indictment of both federal inmate Jackson and his girlfriend Kelly Bass not only illustrates very clearly the problems at the federal camp of the U.S. Penitentiary Atlanta but also the efforts underway by the FBI, working with the Atlanta Police and its other law enforcement partners, to remedy the matter. Federal inmates walking away from federal detention facilities is escape, plain and simple, and the federal indictment of these two reflects this,” said David J. LeValley, Special Agent in Charge, FBI Atlanta Field Office.
“The Atlanta Police Department’s number one priority is the safety of our communities. The department is always willing to cooperate with other agencies to reduce the threat to neighborhoods that escaped inmates present. U.S. Attorney John Horn and his staff deserve a lot of credit and thanks for making these types of cases a top priority and sending a message that any prison escapes will be prosecuted and result in additional charges,” said Atlanta Police Chief Erika Shields.
According to U.S. Attorney Horn, the charges, and other information presented in court: the United States Penitentiary in Atlanta (“USP Atlanta”) also operates a satellite prison camp for minimum-security male inmates. In May 2010, Jackson was convicted of conspiring to distribute cocaine and conspiring to launder money. From July 2016 to April 2017, Jackson was assigned to the USP Atlanta minimum security camp. According to prison visitation records, Jackson listed Bass as his fiancée.
The indictment alleges that from approximately November 2016 to April 2017, Jackson and Bass conspired to provide inmates who escaped from USP Atlanta’s camp with transportation in exchange for a fee. For example, on January 28, 2017, Bass allegedly picked up Jackson and other escaped inmates from outside USP Atlanta, drove them to a nearby hotel, and hours later, returned Jackson and the other inmates to USP Atlanta. Financial records show that Bass received approximately $4,000 from accounts associated with USP Atlanta inmates or the inmates’ families during this six-month period.
On April 13, 2017, Jackson allegedly escaped from USP Atlanta’s camp again, after which Bass picked him up and drove him away from the prison. Law enforcement officers then stopped Bass’s SUV and arrested Bass and Jackson. After searching the SUV, officers recovered two cell phones, a box filled with packs of cigarettes, and several bottles of alcohol, which is consistent with contraband that is smuggled back into the prison.
On April 25, 2017, a federal grand jury indicted Deldrick D. Jackson, 41, of DeKalb County, Georgia, and Kelly M. Bass, 38, also of DeKalb County, on conspiratorial and substantive escape charges.
This case is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Atlanta Police Department.
Assistant U.S. Attorneys Jeffrey W. Davis and Timothy H. Lee are prosecuting the case.
For further information please contact the U.S. Attorney’s Public Affairs Office at USAGAN.PressEmails@usdoj.gov or (404) 581-6016. The Internet address for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia is http://www.justice.gov/usao-ndga.