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1 man detained, another sought after drone crash outside prison

A 28-year-old man has been taken into custody, and another man is being sought after a drone carrying items including cell phones, tobacco and marijuana was found in the bushes outside a South Carolina maximum security prison. The second man was recorded on the surveillance video of a convenience store purchasing items that were found with the drone.

Officials do not yet know whether the drone crashed by accident or was deliberately flown into the prison. A representative from the prison said that it was a type of drone that could fly long distances and that law enforcement must work to combat newer technologies such as this one.

This is not the first time an effort has been made to fly contraband into a prison via drone. In 2013, individuals attempted to fly cell phones and tobacco into a Georgia prison using the same method.

Despite the high-tech nature of the operation, the charges in a case like this are similar to the ones that would be brought against an individual suspected of smuggling in contraband through more conventional means. The man currently in custody is facing drug charges including attempting to furnish contraband to inmates and drug possession.

The man may have a number of options available for defense. It is not clear how he was connected to the drone, but it may be possible for an attorney to argue that the connection is tenuous or that the drone was not intended to deliver the items to the prison. The man might also opt for a plea bargain. This would allow him to plead guilty to some charges in exchange for a reduced sentence.

Source: ABC News, "Drone Carrying Drugs And Phones Crashes Outside South Carolina Prison", Alyssa Newcomb, July 31, 2014

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