Officer at jail accused of selling handcuff key to inmate for $20

February 27, 1993|By Roger Twigg | Roger Twigg,Staff Writer

A correctional officer at the Baltimore City Detention Center has been charged with selling an inmate a handcuff key for $20, authorities said.

Charles Fairfax Thompson III, 26, a correctional officer since 1989, was arrested by state police about 11 p.m. Wednesday at the Detention Center, said LaMont W. Flanagan, commissioner of the state Division of Pretrial Detention and Services, which runs the jail.

The inmate, whose name was not divulged, was being held at the Detention Center on a theft charge, Mr. Flanagan said. The inmate allegedly met the officer at a pre-arranged time to make the purchase, he said.

Mr. Flanagan said it is likely that the inmate wanted to use the key to attempt an escape, possibly while being transported to or from a court appearance.

Officer Thompson was charged criminally with aiding and abetting in an escape, authorities said. He also faces administrative charges within the Division of Correction for bringing contraband -- in this case, money -- into a jail facility, they said.

Officer Thompson was awaiting a bail hearing last night before an Eastern District court commissioner.

Should he not make bail, he would be taken to the Detention Center as an inmate, Mr. Flanagan said.

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