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Peninsula Regional Jail officer accused of plotting to bring drugs to inmates

Virginia Peninsula Regional Jail (WYDaily/Andrew Harris)
Virginia Peninsula Regional Jail (WYDaily/Andrew Harris)

A corrections officer at the Virginia Peninsula Regional Jail was arrested last month after a monthlong investigation into drugs being brought into the facility, according to court documents.

Robert D. Tucker, 29, of New Kent, is accused of conspiring to deliver drugs to a prisoner and delivery of articles to a prisoner, James City County Police spokeswoman Stephanie Williams said.

Tucker was arrested June 18 after an investigation by the James City County Police Department and the Virginia Peninsula Regional Jail.

Court documents do not specify whether Tucker is still an employee of the jail, and Virginia Peninsula Regional Jail officials did not immediately respond Friday to a request for information on Tucker’s employment status.

According to a criminal complaint filed in open court, Tucker allegedly delivered a Mountain Dew soda to an inmate at the jail without permission June 15. Police said video surveillance showed Tucker allegedly bringing the drink to an inmate in an area of the jail where Tucker was not working.

At the time, Jail Superintendent Tony Pham and his staff had been investigating reports of illegal drugs being brought into the facility.

A “credible and reliable informant” inside the jail told investigators Tucker had been bringing illegal drugs into the facility, which were disseminated among the inmates, the complaint says.

Pham and his staff have corroborated details from the informant alleging Tucker brought marijuana wax, also known as “dabs,” into the jail multiple times in the months leading up to his arrest, the complaint says.

The informant was able to tell investigators how the operation worked, and made statements “against his own penal interest.”

Jail staff also obtained an audio recording of Tucker conspiring with an informant to bring dabs into the jail and explaining how the items would be concealed, the complaint states.

The recording also includes Tucker talking about meeting friends outside the jail to pick up the drugs, and how to use electrical wires from light fixtures in cells to “introduce the wax marijuana into the body,” documents say.

Williams said the investigation is ongoing, and no further information was available Friday.

Tucker is scheduled to appear in the Williamsburg-James City County General District Court at 1 p.m. Sept. 18, according to online court records.

He is currently out on bail, records show.

Sarah Fearing
Sarah Fearing
Sarah Fearing is the Assistant Editor at WYDaily. Sarah was born in the state of Maine, grew up along the coast, and attended college at the University of Maine at Orono. Sarah left Maine in October 2015 when she was offered a job at a newspaper in West Point, Va. Courts, crime, public safety and civil rights are among Sarah’s favorite topics to cover. She currently covers those topics in Williamsburg, James City County and York County. Sarah has been recognized by other news organizations, state agencies and civic groups for her coverage of a failing fire-rescue system, an aging agriculture industry and lack of oversight in horse rescue groups. In her free time, Sarah enjoys lazing around with her two cats, Salazar and Ruth, drinking copious amounts of coffee and driving places in her white truck.

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