Guard arrested for smuggling drugs into correctional facility

Monday, March 26, 2012 - 8:00am

VERNON PARISH, LA — The Vernon Parish Narcotics Task Force initiated an investigation in connection with illegal Narcotics being smuggled into the Vernon Correctional Facility. The investigation led to the arrests of three persons.

Manfried Steve Johnson, age 46, of Anacoco, La. was charged with one count of Malfeasance in Office. His bond was set at $25,000.00.

Ronnie Shelton, age 34, of Leesville was charged with one count of Possession of Schedule II Narcotics with the intent to Distribute, 2 counts of Criminal Conspiracy, and I count of Introduction of contraband into a penal institution. His bond was set at $80,000.00.

The third person arrested was Wanda Thompson, age 54, of Anacoco, La. She was charged with one count of Criminal Conspiracy and one count of Distribution of Schedule II Narcotics. Her bond has been set at $75,000.00.

These arrests were made after the Task Force received information that Johnson, a guard at the prison, was bringing illegal narcotics into the prison. An investigation into these allegations revealed that Johnson was receiving narcotics from Thompson and then supplying Shelton, an inmate at the prison, with those drugs.

Manfried Steve Johnson was terminated from his position as well as being charged criminally for his participation in this illegal activity.

Sheriff Craft states that it is unfortunate that these types of incidents occur but assures the public of Vernon Parish that when they do occur the persons involved will be dealt with accordingly.