Woman tries to smuggle drugs, scalpel into N.Y. prison in tampon

By Leigh Hornbeck, Staff Writer
The Times Union

COMSTOCK - A Connecticut woman faces felony charges after she allegedly tried to smuggle drugs and a scalpel into Great Meadow state prison in a tampon, authorities said Tuesday. Cassandra D. Jones, 42, of 100 Cold Springs Road, Rocky Hill, Conn., was visiting an inmate whose name was not released, according to Linda Foglia, a state Department of Corrections spokeswoman.

The 30-year-old inmate is serving time at the maximum security Washington County prison for a murder he committed in New York City. He was incarcerated in October 2000, and he is eligible for parole in 2025, Foglia said. After Jones' arrest, the inmate was placed in solitary confinement but no charges have been filed against him.

"It is extremely challenging to stop the flow of drugs into our prisons, but our goal is to keep prisons safe," Foglia said.

Foglia said 750 people visit Great Meadow annually and 600,000 packages are sent to prisoners inside.

Jones allegedly put inside the tampon 2.5 grams of heroin, 10 capsules of Kadian - morphine - and the scalpel, state troopers said. Staff at the prison pulled her out of the visitors' line Saturday morning, acting on information Jones would try to smuggle the contraband.

Jones was charged with two felonies: third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance and introduction of dangerous contraband into a prison. She was also charged with a misdemeanor conspiracy count.

Jones was arrested by State Police, arraigned in front of a Fort Ann town justice and jailed for want of $50,000 cash bail. Jones is due back in court today.

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