Release mixups at jails led to firings

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Regional Jail Authority director Terry Miller told legislators Monday he fired the administrator of Southern Regional Jail and four jail officers in October because of two incidents in which inmates were mistakenly released from jail.

“If you erroneously release somebody, that’s a serious offense, and I take it seriously,” Miller told a legislative oversight committee on regional jails and corrections. “What if a murderer gets out, or a sexual offender, and commits another crime?” Continue reading

Regional Jail Guard Faces Charges

Southern Regional Jail has one of their own arraigned

BECKLEY — A correctional officer at the Southern Regional Jail in Beaver was arrested Tuesday afternoon.

According to State Police, a magistrate arraigned 48-year-old Stephen Gillespie of Shady Spring. He’s in court on charges of sexual intercourse with an incarcerated person. According to Troopers, a shift supervisor walked in on Gillespie and the female trusty.

State Police say Gillespie served more than a decade as a guard.

The charge is a felony and the punishment is one to five years in prison and a fine.

Authorities from the Southern Regional Jail refused to comment and deferred all questions to the Regional Jail Authority.

Calls to the Regional Jail Authority Executive Director Terry Miller had not been returned as of Tuesday afternoon.


Former Prison Guard Pleads In Fayette County Court

A former guard at the Mt. Olive prison has admitted helping an inmate escape.

FAYETTEVILLE- — Clarissa Johnson, 36, pleaded guilty to permitting the escape of a prisoner.

Police say Johnson allowed Robert Brady to escape from a work detail at the prison last November.

Brady was on the run for nearly two months before he was re-captured.

Johnson will be sentenced Sept. 15.

She faces one to five years in prison.

Brady goes on trial for the escape next week.


Former Corrections Officer Sentenced to Life Behind Bars

CHARLESTON — A former corrections officer who admitted he killed his wife and stepdaughter has been sentenced to two consecutive life prison terms.

Stanley Pierson pleaded guilty to killing his wife and her 20-year-old daughter in their Campbells Creek home in 2006.

Pierson had expected to be sentenced in February, but that didn’t happen because he suffered an apparent mental breakdown.

“I’m not a violent person and I have no idea why things happened the way they did. I ‘m just trying to do the best I could for everybody. For some reason God has place me in a situation and I’m willing to accept the consequences,” Pierson said.

Pierson had worked as a guard at the Mount Olive Correctional Complex and was also a former corrections officer at the Charleston Work Release Center.


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