Containing Contrabands


Inprison, contrabands are restricted gadgets ranging from weapons, cellphones, drugs, and money. Prison authorities limit inmates frompossessing contrabands because they can wreak harm their colleagues,prison wardens or use them to plan escapes. American prisons haverecorded increase of contrabands inside prison. Containinginfiltration of contrabands has proven a challenging task, as thereare thousands of prison employees willing to smuggle the items forthe inmates.

Cellphones are a popular contraband with prisoners. The gadgets aredangerous to the safety of prison officers because inmates can planto kill the wardens with gangs outside prisons. Arrested inmates whomight pick grudge with prison guards often seek assistance of gangmembers to execute the wardens, which in turn puts prison officers’life at risk. Second, inmates can intimidate the wardens usingexternal support. Gang members behind bars communicate can send theircolleagues to threaten an individual warden to give specialprivileges or other illegal favors to their colleagues (Schmalleger &ampSmykla, 2015). Third, planning prison escapes is an elaborate taskthat requires extensive planning. Besides, correctional officers gethurt as inmates use force to escape. Cell phones make prison escapeeasy because inmates can easily seek assistance from other free gangmembers. Fourth, cell phones make it easy to smuggle additionalcontrabands in the correctional facility. If weapons are importedinto prisons, correction officers are vulnerable to sufferinginjuries inflicted using the gadgets (Grohs, 2014).

Themost efficient technology device for combating contrabands in prisonis scanning devices. Correction officers have a wide range ofnon-invasive gadgets they can use to detect contrabands that inmatescould be carrying ranging from drugs, non-metallic and guns amongothers. Prisons can purchase a new optical detection kit that canread if a person has used drugs. The gadget resembles a pair ofbinoculars, and it has a periphery that connects it to a computer. Itflashes a green light across a person’s pupil, and then takes thereading on an individual’s pupil dilation and contraction toestablish if a person has used drugs (Grohs, 2014). Correctionofficers can use the gadget to know inmates that abuse drugs as thegadget has the capability of detecting a person that had consumeddrugs even after obvious physical influence are untraceable. The“Contraband Detector” is another efficient device for detectingillegal gadgets such as guns, drugs and explosives, cell phones andother electronic gadget hidden in human bodies, tires, walls andhollow regions (Schmalleger &amp Smykla, 2015).

Correctionalofficers deal with gang activities in correctional facilities throughpreventing visitors and staff from importing contrabands for inmates.Prison authorities have invested in advanced technology for detectingillegal substances such as cell phones, which gangs in prison and theones outside use to communicate. In addition, prison authorities haveestablished deterrent measures such as incarceration and fines forindividuals caught importing or assisting inmates to smugglecontrabands in jail. For instance, California has passed a law tofine persons caught importing contrabands in $5,000 and six monthsimprisonment. Besides, Central Mississippi Correctional Facility hasestablished a 40-foot perimeter wall at susceptible spots whereinmates can collect contrabands sent by gang members outside prison(Grohs, 2014). Corrections and Rehabilitation centers are also usingadvanced technology such as CellSense to detect contrabands(Schmalleger &amp Smykla, 2015).

Prisonauthorities can improve correction officers’ security throughintroducing devices made using advanced technology for detectingcontraband items such as weapons, drugs, cell phones and otherelectronic devices such as explosives. Physical searches have failed,as some staff members are involved in the importation of illegalcommodities in prisons. However, contraband detectors can deterinmates from possessing weapons that they can use to injure theofficers. In addition, detectors can help in tracing cell phones usedto connect gangs in prison with their colleagues outside thefacility. The second phase of improving correctional officers’security is through introducing deterrent measures, which includesetting tough punishment for wardens, inmates or visitors caughtimporting contrabands in prisons (Schmalleger &amp Smykla, 2015).For instance, California’s law for fining persons importingcontrabands in prison $5,000 and incarcerating them for six monthshas reduced the number of offenders substantially. Finally, prisonauthorities should provide wardens with efficient weapons such aselectric guns that are efficient for restraining violent personswithout causing physical injuries (Grohs, 2014). The weapons ensurethat correctional officers can restrain violent inmates quickly evenwithout the assistance from other members of the bureau.


Schmalleger,F., &amp Smykla, J. O. (2015). Correctionsin the 21st century(7th ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill Education.

Grohs,M. (2014). Containingcontraband.Corrections Forum.