Hundreds of pills found inside the walls of an Iowa prison facility have come back negative for any controlled substances. The 300 to 400 unknown capsules were discovered earlier this month during a routine inspection by staff at the North Central Correctional Facility in Rockwell City.
Initial testing at the prison found the pills might contain cocaine and the prescription pain reliever Demerol. But, Iowa Department of Corrections spokesperson Fred Scaletta says the DCI crime lab has completed more thorough testing. “It was determined the pills were not illegal drugs,” Scaletta says. “The Department of Corrections does consider them to be contraband and we will continue our investigation into those matters.”
The minimum security facility in Calhoun County houses around 490 inmates who are classified as “low risk” offenders. It remains unclear how the pills slipped through security and exact content of the pills. “I haven’t got that confirmation yet, but I know they were over-the-counter drugs that were purchased at a pharmacy,” Scaletta said.
A news release from AFSCME Iowa Council 61 last week claimed, since the discovery of the pills, “numerous inmates at the North Central Correctional Facility have tested positive for marijuana.” Scaletta said he’s not heard anything about inmates using marijuana at the Rockwell City prison.