7 indicted for smuggling drugs, cell phones into prison with bread truck

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FANNIN COUNTY, Tex. (KXII) -- Back in December 2014, some cafeteria workers at the Finley-Oates Elementary School in Bonham got the surprise of a lifetime while unloading bread from a delivery truck.

"I don't think they knew what they exactly had, they just knew something was real suspicious," said Dale Day, an officer who works for the Bonham ISD.

Officials said under the bread was more than a pound of marijuana, cell phones and cell phone chargers.

"I think there were six to eight packages, I don't remember exactly, and they were wrapped in black electrical tape," said Day.

So far, seven people have been indicted: Tony Kinnard, Devondric Smith, Kenard Smith, Excelcer Colbert, Ernest Gabriel, Erica Miller and Gail Lynette Smith-Crowe.

"I had no idea it was going to become this big of a deal," said Day.

"This is an interesting case. This case started by accident," said Fannin County District Attorney Richard Glaser.

Glaser said the bread was mistakenly dropped off at the elementary and that the bread was intended for the truck's next stop on its usual weekly route, the Barry Telford Unit in New Boston, Texas.

"We know these things exist, but this was really sort of an intricate operation. Very well organized," said Glaser.

We're told the Office of Inspector General's investigation revealed that while the bakery was closed, a former disgruntled employee with the bread company would sneak in and hide the drugs and contraband under the bread, to then be delivered to inmates working in the prison kitchen.

Glaser said the elaborate scheme was going on for at least a year and that some of the inmates' relatives were in on it too, as well as a current employee with the bread truck company at the time.

"The owner of the bread truck company was unaware of it and was cooperative with the investigators," said Glaser.

In a statement, Inspector General Bruce Toney said, "The result of the indictment is the work of many man hours by investigators with the Office of Inspector General - TDCJ. Smuggling or attempting to smuggle contraband into a facility will not be tolerated and we will continue to root it out."

Glaser said some people involved are still at large and the investigation is ongoing.

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