Georgia state prison leader addresses concerns at Smith State Prison

Published: Feb. 24, 2023 at 5:10 PM EST
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GLENNVILLE, Ga. (WTOC) - As claims and concerns continue to surround Smith State Prison, we took our questions to the commissioner of the Georgia Department of Corrections.

The head of Georgia’s state prison system believes the firing and arrest of former warden Brian Adams deals a major blow to a contraband operation inside the prison.

“We do not believe that there are other people involved, as of right now. That’s subject to change as the investigation continues,” said Tyrone Oliver, the commissioner of the Georgia Department of Corrections.

A prison employee spoke anonymously about what they said was a rampant stream of contraband coming in and being used by inmates as rewards for crimes inside the prison.


When asked about drones being used to fly in contraband, Oliver responded, “I wouldn’t be surprised if that’s happening. We’ve got to work with our federal partners and others for some technology to combat some of this stuff.”

The employee said that their attempts to report the problems went nowhere. Commissioner Oliver says corrections staff members can take concerns all the way up to him to get Smith or other prisons back on track.

“We are not going to allow these inmates to run these prisons anymore,” Oliver said.

He says they’re also aggressively recruiting more officers to turn the tide and make staff members feel safer.

Former warden Adams remains free on bond after his arrest.