Health care worker arrested for allegedly smuggling contraband into jail

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PURCELL, Okla. - A health care worker at the McClain County Jail was arrested after being accused of smuggling contraband inside the jail.

She works for a health care company that contracts with counties to provide care for inmates.

“It’s been about a month or so ago, we suspected, of course, some of the information we were getting from our inmates and we started an internal investigation on it,” said McClain County Sheriff Don Hewett.

Several days ago, officials found a cell phone among the trustees at the jail and traced it back to Kristi Stricklen.

“We brought a forensic expert in to look it up and we found her cell phone number, her personal cell phone number, on that,” said Sheriff Hewett.

Detectives also obtained a search warrant for Stricklen’s car and allegedly found a crack pipe with methamphetamine residue.

“She readily admitted that she did buy the cell phone for one of the trustees, that she has been bringing controlled dangerous substances into our facility,” said Hewett.

Stricklen works for Turnkey Health Clinics, an Oklahoma City based company that provides health care for inmates at correctional facilities.

Records at the state health department show Stricklen’s nurse aide certification expired back in 2005.

But the company tells us she was employed as a medical assistant, not a nursing aide.

Regardless of her role, Hewett says they took swift action and they’re investigating to see if this was going on at any of the other facilities where Stricklen worked.

“It’s an embarrassment to us and, like I said, we are not going to tolerate this,” said Hewett.

She was arraigned Tuesday morning and bonded out of jail shortly after.

 

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