2 county inmates charged for damage to jail property | Crime
MISSISSIPPI COUNTY, MO (KFVS) - Mississippi County Sheriff Keith Moore said two inmates are facing additional charges for their roles in vandalizing a fire protection sprinkler in the Mississippi County Detention Center.
Anthony Matthews, Junior, 19, of East Prairie, and T.J. Potts, 18, of New Madrid, are both charged with damage to jail property. Their bonds were set at $5,000.
According to Sheriff Moore, the investigation began on Aug. 20 when corrections staff contacted Jail Administrator Cory Hutcheson to report a busted sprinkler in B-Pod of the detention center. Once the water had drained from the system, Deputy Hutcheson noticed the sprinkler was bent, a sign that it had been hit by something.
Moore said Deputy Hutcheson reviewed surveillance video and found that two inmate had taken turns hitting the sprinkler with a broom handle until it finally busted, spilling several hundred gallons of water into the men's cell.
When interviewed, Potts told Hutcheson that he had delivered the final blow to the sprinkler; and despite being caught on camera, Matthews denied any involvement in the offense.
"County taxpayers shouldn't foot the bill for intentional damage caused by inmates," said Jail Administrator Cory Hutcheson. "And inmates know if they tear something up, they're going to be prosecuted."
Damage to jail property is a class D felony punishable by up to four years in the Department of Corrections.
At the time of the offense, Sheriff Moore said Matthews and Potts were jailed on separate and unrelated burglary charges. Matthews bond before the incident was $100,000 and Potts was being held without bond.
"We want the community to know," Moore said, "that we respect our property, and we demand that same respect from the inmates we house."
As of press time, both remain in custody in the Mississippi County Detention Center.
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