Ezra Black, a detention deputy for Rockdale County, was arrested for smuggling cocaine into the Rockdale County jail this week.
He has been accused of abusing his position of power and is facing a good number of charges including crossing the guard line, possession of cocaine with intent to distribute, violation of oath of office, and possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony.
According to the reports, Black admitted to smuggling the cocaine into the jail for an inmate. There was an ongoing, undercover investigation for the past month before he was arrested.
Crossing the Guard Line in Georgia
Georgia Crossing the Guard Line is defined in §42-5-15 of the Georgia Code as:
It shall be unlawful for any person to come inside the guard lines established at any state or county correctional institution with a gun, pistol, or any other weapon or with or under the influence of any intoxicating liquor, amphetamines, biphetamines, or any other hallucinogenic or other drugs, without the knowledge or consent of the warden, superintendent, or his designated representative.
This is a law designed to punish anyone who tries to sneak contraband into a jail or prison. Criminal intent is an essential element of a crime, and the state of Georgia must prove it beyond a reasonable doubt in order to convict an individual.
Intent to cross the guard line must be shown by examining the evidence in the case. If someone came at a correctional institution with contraband, while visiting someone else, then there is a clear intention to violate the law. If someone tried to pass drugs or a weapon to a correctional officer, there also is clear criminal intent. However, this intent is not always so clear.
As a Georgia DUI Lawyer, I see these charges frequently. Most often when someone is arrested for a DUI and happens to have less than an ounce of marijuana in his or her pocket. These charges are inappropriate and do not apply. They had no intention to go to jail in the first place, and therefore, they had no intention to bring drugs into the jail.
If you or a loved one has been charged with DUI or DUI Drugs in Georgia, and then subsequently charged with crossing the guard line after being arrested, contact us today.