Golden Grove guard accused of having sex with inmate
Published: January 23, 2013
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ST. CROIX - A V.I. Corrections officer was advised of her rights Monday after being arrested on a charge of having sexual relations with a detainee at Golden Grove Adult Correctional Facility.
Keisha Whyte, 26, of Estate Strawberry was arrested over the weekend and charged with the crime following an investigation into the contents of a cellular phone that was found.
During a random search of inmate Joh Williams' cell, an iPhone 5 cellular phone was confiscated by officers from William's pants pocket, Warden Basil Richards said in his affidavit supporting the arrest. A subsequent search of the phone for information revealed a number of videos, including one of Williams and the Corrections officer having sex, according to Richards.
After getting the phone containing the video for review, Richards was able to identify Whyte by her Corrections uniform shirt, her voice and a view of her face on the video.
A search of text messages on the phone also revealed that the two had been exchanging text messages for some time and that Whyte had shared intelligence with Williams through coded messages about when there would be shake-downs on his unit and how he could hide the contraband that he had, Richards said.
Bail for Whyte had been set at $25,000 and she was released to a third-party custodian and allowed to post 10 percent of the bond and sign and unsecured bond for the balance. She was ordered to stay away from the Correctional Facility and to have no contact - direct or indirect - with Williams while the case is pending.
Williams currently is serving a life sentence plus 40 years at Golden Grove after being convicted of first-degree murder in a 2009 shooting incident.
In March, V.I. Presiding Superior Court Judge Darryl Donohue handed down maximum sentences for Williams and his three co-defendants for the killing 25-year-old Almanzo Williams outside a dance in August 2009 in Castle Coakley.
Donohue sentenced Williams to life in prison without parole on the murder conviction and 15 years on the assault conviction. He ordered that those two sentences be served concurrently and sentenced him to an additional consecutive five-year sentence on the reckless endangerment conviction and 20 years on the firearms conviction.
Whyte is the second Corrections officers to come before the court on charges this month. On Jan. 2, Isabel Urgent was arrested and charged with attempting to introduce contraband into the prison. Prison officials said they were alerted that she was going to be smuggling drugs into the prison, and when she reported for work, she was searched and a partially burned marijuana cigarette was found in her bra and she was arrested, according to Corrections officials. No other drugs were found, according to court records.
She was released on $10,000 bail.
Assistant Director of Corrections Dwayne Benjamin said Tuesday that the recent arrests are not a result of any increased initiatives at the facility but the continued work of the institution to uphold the law, and protect the prison population and the Corrections officers. He said the bureau tries its best to follow the procedures closely even when it comes to infractions by Corrections officers. Any officer arrested is placed on administrative leave without pay while their case is pending, he said.
- Contact reporter Fiona Stokes at 714-9149 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.