Bennettsville, South Carolina holds a prison by the name of Evans Correctional institution. That prison became a little more infamous last August when an inmate took a video of himself that he posted on Facebook Live for all to see. In the video, the inmate was brandishing a knife and looking very threatening. Not surprisingly, this got a lot of people up in arms. They wanted to know how something like this was even possible. It led to renewed attention to companies such as Securus Technologies and stories like that of ex-correctional officer Robert Johnson.
Securus Technologies is a security company that provides communications blocking technology to hundreds of prisons around the country. As a matter of fact, their products impact more than one million inmates in the country. They also produce items that make it possible for inmates to contact their loved ones, but only in a secure way. Their line of work is something that most of us take for granted, but it is something that provides us with security that we may not have even realized that we needed.
Robert Johnson is one person that you do not have to convince of the benefits of keeping cell phones out of the hands of inmates. He knows about the dangers of this from experiences in his own life. He used to be a correctional officer in a different prison in the state of South Carolina. In his time there, he saw numerous packages that tried to make their way through the doors. It was his job to make sure that items that were not supposed to get through did not. He did this once with a package that was clearly very valuable to whoever was supposed to receive it in the prison. In fact, it was so valuable that a prison gang called someone on the outside to kill Johnson.
The attempt was made, and Johnson was shot in his home by an intruder multiple times. However, he managed to pull through and survive the ordeal. It was a miracle that it worked out this way, but it just went to show that inmates with cell phones is a very dangerous combination.
Since that time, Robert Johnson has worked very hard alongside Securus Technologies to try to make sure that nothing like this ever happens to anyone ever again. He wants to see their technologies deployed in more prisons than they already are. He also wants to see pressure put on lawmakers to do the right thing and strengthen regulations on cell phones getting into the prisons. It is possible to make those changes, but only with the cooperation of everyone involved. Johnson is hopeful that stories like his help to shine a spotlight on the need for these types of changes.