An early morning shakedown at the Golden Grove Correctional Facility on St. Croix Friday turned up a trove of weapons, medication, electronics and other contraband, according to acting Warden Diane Prosper.
The operation was a collaborative effort of the Bureau of Corrections and the Virgin Islands Police Department Prosper said, aimed at reducing contraband and improving safety and security at the facility.
“With the assistance of the VI Police Department’s Tactical and K-9 Units, we were able to complete a thorough shakedown of two of our most problematic areas within the facility, which included searches of dormitories, vocational shop areas and several other common areas," Prosper said. "The four hour shakedown took place between 1 a.m. and 5 a.m., with an evacuation of all inmates in the targeted units in order to gain access and conduct searches of the areas.”
Contraband uncovered included: cell phones, cartons of cigarettes, screwdrivers, shanks, scissors, pocket knives, satellite speakers, cell phone chargers, headphones, marijuana and marijuana paraphernalia, SIM cards, lighters, medication, cell phone batteries, customized fans, ear plug replacements, USB cords, spoiled fruits, "pooch liquor," a padlock, charger adapters, a drill bit, jewelry, screws and bandage clips.
The acting warden said the operation demonstrated the efforts taking place to enhance security and safety for both employees and inmates at the facility.
“I would be remiss however, if I did not say thank you to the Golden Grove team consisting of sworn and civilian personnel who worked long and hard throughout the operation; and particularly Keith Francois, security administrator, and Chief Shern Morris who played major roles in the operation’s success," she said. "I am appreciative for the continued support and collaboration received and exhibited by the VIPD through the contribution of its resources and manpower. Additionally, a big thank you to Director-designee Rick Mullgrav for his partaking in the operation as well, along with."