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DOC's rap sheet continues to grow

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by Krystal Paco

Guam – There are more problems to report out of the Department of Corrections. It's not just inmates that are getting into trouble, but potentially staff as well.     

A fight between two inmates assigned to the Halfway House has spawned off additional investigations, this time involving staff. DOC spokesperson Jeff Limo said, "About 1:30 this afternoon, agents from my office arrested Alex Castro for aggravated assault for an incident that took place yesterday involving an altercation with another inmate."

Although Limo would only confirm that two DOC employees are under investigation according to KUAM News sources Castro's arrest triggered another investigation because DOC questioned why he was in the halfway house in the first place. "That investigation is going on relative to two employees being placed on administrative leave," said Limo.

According to KUAM sources, one of those under investigation is a high-ranking DOC officer. The two are accused of receiving gratuities possibly in exchange for inmates being moved from the general population to DepCor's Halfway House facility.

These latest IA's follow a string of other investigations.

As we've been reporting, a mass screening for tuberculosis was prompted following a confirmed case of TB on a pre-trial detainee. The recent fight and stabbing in DepCor's special housing unit where maximum security inmates are detained.  The inmates who were involved in that altercation tested positive for drugs.

The growing list of concerns out of DepCor raises red flags for Senator Brant McCreadie., who's been pushing for solutions for the island's correctional facility. "When we see developments like this happening over the last six to eight months and it continuously uncovers problems at the Department of Corrections, this is all the more reason we have to consider immediately building a brand new infrastructure," he said.

Meanwhile, although Limo admits a new corrections facility could help, he adds DepCor's issues are no different from other prisons. "We're in control. We're staying at bay. Again these incidents that are happening are isolated incidents. These incidents happen at all prisons. There's always going to be altercations. There's always going to be contraband. We're doing our best and we will continue to do our best," he explained. 
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