A former Washington County Detention Officer whose downfall was a ringing cell phone pleaded guilty Wednesday to official misconduct and bringing contraband into the jail.
Nicholas Dalton Kent, 30, 1307 Ballard Drive, worked at the jail one year and one month when a jail administrator called him in about allegations he had provided a cell phone for an inmate earlier this year.
Kent will spend two years on probation. Judge Robert Cupp granted judicial diversion for Kent, which means if he stays out of trouble and completes any requirements from the probation office, the charges will be expunged from his record.
Kent represented himself in the proceeding.
“If you play by the rules there will never be any indication you were charged or convicted in the state,” Cupp told Kent.
Cupp asked Kent what he did to warrant the charges.
“An inmate approached me,” and asked for Kent to get a cell phone into the jail. Kent said he made the transaction for the money.
In addition to the cell phone, Kent said he also took “various candies and paperback books,” into the jail for inmates.
Kent said he was told there was a cell search, or shakedown, and that was how officers found the phone.
When Kent was arrested in March, officials said an officer in one of the men’s pods heard a cell phone ring. That’s when jail staff conducted a search and found it.