Convicts Still Calling From Texas Prisons

Nearly 1,000 cell phones confiscated from Texas prisons

One year after Texas prison operators promised to get mobile phones out of the hands of inmates, records show mobile phones are still getting into convicts hands.

A state report shows that authorities confiscated 995 cell phones between January and August, a rate that will top last year's 1,226 seizures if it continues, according to the Austin-American Statesman.

Prison officials have stepped up random cell searches and random searches of staff members and visitors.

According to the report, the Stiles Unit in Beaumont continues to rank first -- with 207 cell phones confiscated from convicts in eight months. However, no phones were found during a recent search on death row. A 2008 lockdown turned up 22 cell phones.

Prison system executive director Brad Livingston says the cell phone demand is significant enough for people to try to "beat the system."

Delivery is expected by February on $480,000 worth of electronic devices to locate cell phone signals within the prisons.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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