Augusta prison worker faces charges of smuggling contraband

Melissa Brown

An Augusta State Medical Prison employee has been arrested after admitting to smuggling contraband to prisoners during the past month.

Melissa Lenett Brown, 34, of Hawk Street, is charged with trading with convicts without permission and giving convicts articles without consent of the warden.

According to an incident report, authorities were alerted to the smuggling during a check of employees as they entered the property Wednesday morning. Dog units gave a positive signal for tobacco products while walking around Brown’s vehicle. In the vehicle, officers discovered large amounts of tobacco, cigarettes, cellphones and a Green Dot debit card used by inmates.

The report said Brown admitted that over the past month an inmate would pay her $600 to $700 at a time by cash or debit card for the items.

Brown told police she would hide the items in her clothes while walking through checkpoints in the mornings, the report said.