Gathering intelligence for investigations challenges law enforcement across the country, most often due to budget constraints. With that in mind, Securus Technologies® is dedicated to providing digital tools that improve the safety and security of facilities, staff, incarcerated residents and communities. Securus’ Guarded Exchange offers investigative products and services aimed at predicting and even stopping illegal activity before it occurs.
In the case of the Moniteau County Sheriff's Office, the challenge with solving investigations deals with its restricted availability of resources.
“We have a limited budget and limited manpower,” said Sheriff Tony Wheatley.
The other obstacle his agency faced was time constraints when dealing with third-party vendors or state agencies. He explains that time was wasted waiting on valuable evidence that often became unusable because it was too old by the date it was received by his office.
“If we contact the Missouri State Highway Patrol lab for data, it can take up to two to three months,” Wheatley stated. “Old forensics can ruin a prosecution.”
However, when the sheriff’s office started using Securus, he saw a drastic change.
“If we need that information now, we just give Securus a call, and get it in one or two days,” Wheatley said.
One of the services, Securus’ Guarded Exchange offers the sheriff’s office includes the monitoring of phone calls, 60 to 90 days prior to a trial, to alert facility staff of any new evidence to further the investigation.
“Securus’ Guarded Exchange has aided on several phone extractions where we needed that information, sooner rather than later,” stated Wheatley. “We can’t afford to wait around for valuable investigative evidence.”
He adds that his office also relies on Securus Technologies for cold cases. Those that have proven to have been most instrumental are cell phone extractions using Securus’ Guarded Exchange K9s.
Additionally, while competitors talk about solutions, Securus solves real problems faced by its correctional partners. Guarded Exchange monitors non-private calls for customers to reveal the whereabouts of suspected criminals before illegal acts are committed. This service gives agencies strong evidence needed for prosecutions. Monitoring excludes calls to numbers designated by our correctional partners as private, such as those of attorney phone numbers, because these calls are not recorded and cannot be monitored. Therefore, attorney-client privileged calls are not monitored.
The case of Jessi Jayne Bull is just one example of a crime that was prevented in its tracks. This drug crime, Wheatley says, has become commonplace in this area of the state. The press release distributed by the Moniteau County Sheriff’s Office on February 15, 2019, states that Bull had bond set at $50,000 for a possible attempt to deliver a controlled substance (meth) into a Missouri DOC facility.
Wheatley was tipped off by a call from a Missouri DOC investigator saying that Securus had been monitoring calls about a drug drop at Tipton Correctional Center.
“Guarded Exchange had latched on to a series of calls from Bull that she was going to be attempting to deliver on February 15, 2019,” Wheatley explained.
Thanks to the tip, DOC investigators were waiting for the suspect’s arrival on that date, inside the facility. Meanwhile, Wheatley and his detectives arrived at Tipton in unmarked vehicles and kept the suspect under surveillance in the parking lot and followed her inside the institution. Bull cooperated with officers who interrogated her and later confessed her guilt.
“She did admit that the drugs were administered inside her person,” Wheatley stated.
He adds that she was going to pass the contraband to her incarcerated male friend. Bull was taken to Moniteau County Sheriff’s Office where she was arrested.
On September 27, 2019, she was prosecuted. She pled guilty to delivery of a controlled substance and was placed on Suspended Imposition of Sentence (SIS) with five-years of probation.
“This case would’ve never been caught before our use of Securus’ Guarded Exchange”, stated Wheatley.
The sheriff explains that it is Securus’ specialized technology which makes a positive impact on investigations.
“Guarded Exchange saves us time and manpower on investigating. Securus saves us on K9 costs and staff for those investigations as well as cell phone extractions,” Wheatley concluded. “‘It saves us a lot of time, and time is money.”
About Securus Technologies LLC
Headquartered in Dallas, Texas, an Aventiv Technologies company, serving more than 3,450 public safety, law enforcement and corrections agencies and over 1,200,000 inmates across North America, Securus Technologies is committed to serve and connect by providing emergency response, incident management, public information, investigation, biometric analysis, communication, information management, inmate self-service, and monitoring products and services in order to make our world a safer place to live. Securus Technologies connecting what matters®. For more information, please visit SecurusTechnologies.tech.