Tarrant Jail Contractor Charged With Smuggling Drugs: Sheriff

Two inmates overdosed a few weeks apart, Tarrant County Sheriff says

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A contractor at the Tarrant County Jail was arrested after an investigation into drug trafficking inside the jail, Sheriff Bill Waybourn said.

Aaliyah Lyles worked as a commissary employee at the Green Bay Jail located at 2500 Urban Drive in Fort Worth.

Lyles, 25, faces two charges of drug possession and one charge of bringing a prohibited substance into the jail.

A search warrant that investigators obtained for Lyles’ car offers the following details of the investigation.

It began after a 20-year-old inmate overdosed on Aug. 17 and had to be hospitalized.

Two other inmates said a commissary employee had smuggled drugs into the jail and after looking over surveillance video investigators identified Lyles as the suspect.

Lyles was searched as she arrived at the jail for work on Aug. 24 and supervisors found she had white pieces of paper with blue edges which a test showed were synthetic marijuana and numerous rolling papers.

In an interview after her arrest, Lyles told investigators an inmate offered to pay for her to get her hair done and then put her in touch with a dealer who offered to pay her $200 to carry drugs into the jail, according to the warrant.

The drugs she admitted smuggling included fentanyl, Waybourn said.

On July 20, 23-year-old inmate Trelynn Wormley died of an apparent fentanyl overdose, Waybourn said. He was in jail on a charge of aggravated robbery.

The Tarrant County Medical Examiner's Office does not list a cause or manner of death for Wormley. However, based on interviews with other inmates, the sheriff said he suspects Wormley knowingly took fentanyl.

Lyles is not charged directly with Wormley's death but it's still under investigation, Wayborn said.

Lyles worked for Keefe Commissary Network, which calls itself the leading provider of commissary management services to corrections facilities nationwide.

The company did not respond to a request for comment.

Lyles bonded out after five days in jail, according to jail records. An attorney for her was not listed in court records.

Waybourn said Lyles had worked in the jail for about two months.

“We poured a lot of resources into it, a serious investigation,” Waybourn said. “We still have several people of interest we are looking at.”

More arrests are possible, the sheriff said.

Meanwhile, administrators are reviewing security procedures at the jail to learn if any changes are needed, Waybourn said.

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