Medical assistant wanted in Fulton jail smuggling case arrested in Mississippi

A medical assistant accused of trying to smuggle a bag of drugs and tobacco products into the Fulton County Jail is now in custody after more than a month on the run, authorities announced Friday.

TreQuera Lashell Ford, 24, was arrested Thursday in Grenada, Mississippi, and is facing several charges, including possession of marijuana with intent to distribute and crossing guard lines with prohibited items, as well as charges related to the possession and sale of marijuana and possession of cocaine.

She had been wanted since last month, when sheriff’s officials said she left a bag containing 192 grams of marijuana, 20 grams of suspected crack cocaine, 200 cigarettes and loose tobacco at the jail’s metal detector and bolted.

“Let me be clear, if you attempt to smuggle anything into the Fulton County Jail, you will be caught, and you will be arrested,” Fulton County Sheriff Patrick Labat said in a statement. “Our deputies and investigators worked relentlessly to bring this fugitive to justice.”

ExploreSheriff: Medical assistant wanted after leaving illegal drugs at jail security

On May 14, Ford smelled of marijuana when she reported to work, drawing the attention of a captain before proceeding through a metal detector at security, sheriff’s spokeswoman Candace Finethy said. Ford tried to explain that “she had smoked pot in her car before coming to work,” Finethy added.

Before the deputy could scan her belongings, which Finethy said is standard protocol for all who enter, Ford insisted on returning to her car. She left her bag behind when she ran out the door, according to the spokeswoman.

“There is an expectation and legal requirement that individuals, who are contractors providing services at the jail, obey the law and work to maintain the safety of the facility and not put others at risk,” Labat said. “When someone violates that trust and the law, we are obligated to file criminal charges.”

According to an arrest warrant obtained by Channel 2 Action News, Ford was allegedly engaging in conversations with inmates days before leaving the drugs at jail security. She had also posted several images of marijuana on her Instagram, the news station reported.

Ford was expected to be booked into the Fulton jail after extradition.