Mississippi couple charged with using Bible to smuggle meth into jail

By Ben Hooper Contact the Author   |   March 21, 2017 at 3:36 PM

March 21 (UPI) -- Authorities in Mississippi said they arrested a woman for trying to smuggle meth to her incarcerated boyfriend by hiding it in a Holy Bible.

The Lee County Sheriff's Department said Courtney Ford, 30, dropped off some items Thursday to deputies that she said were intended for her boyfriend, Stephen Jason Estes, 41, who was in the county jail awaiting transfer to a state prison following a methamphetamine-related conviction.

"We search every item that is brought into the jail, and the property officer noticed something wrong. There was a bulge in the back cover of the Bible," Lee County Sheriff Jim Johnson told the Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal. "We cut it open and found a powdery substance."

The sample tested positive for meth and an unknown substance. A sample has been sent to the state crime lab for further testing.

Johnson said investigators believe Estes conspired with Ford to smuggle the meth into the jail.

"We know he knew about it because that day, he kept asking where his Bible was, even before she dropped it off," Johnson said.

Ford was charged with possession of a controlled substance and attempt to introduce contraband into a correctional facility. Investigators said she was out on bond for a previous possession of a controlled substance arrest at the time of the incident.

Estes, who was sentenced in the previous case to 40 years with 34 suspended, is facing a fresh count of conspiracy to bring contraband into a correctional facility.

"We hope to carry him back before the judge to have his sentence reconsidered," Johnson said. "The judge could reinstate the 34 years and make him serve all 40 years."

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Topics: Jim Johnson
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