2 suspects accused in alleged drug smuggling plot at federal prisons surrender in Harris County

Mycah Hatfield Image
Wednesday, September 27, 2023
2 jailed in Harris Co., accused of plot to airdrop drugs into prisons
Harris County authorities detained a man and a woman who are accused of a nationwide plot to use drones to airdrop drugs behind federal prison walls.

HARRIS COUNTY, Texas (KTRK) -- A man and a woman, who are accused in a scheme to get drugs into federal prisons across the U.S., turned themselves in to the Harris County Jail on Tuesday afternoon.

Noah Stegall, 22, and Keierra Hunter, 20, are facing charges out of Grant Parish, Louisiana.

The sheriff's office in Grant Parish said it uncovered the scheme during a traffic stop near the federal prison in Pollock, Louisiana, almost three weeks ago.

According to Sheriff Steven McCain, deputies found $1.18 million worth of K2-soaked paper, $10,000 worth of Suboxone, $4,000 worth of THC wax, and $1,500 worth of marijuana. They also found two drones and numerous drone batteries, eight cell phones, a vacuum sealer, and a scale.

"You can see these orange drones in front of me," Sheriff McCain said during a news conference. "Law enforcement recovered these drones, it was being used to drop the stuff across the fence inside of the fence of the federal prison. The cans weren't open like this when they were discovered. These were filled with drugs. These drone has an actuator on there that the operator pushes a button on the remote control and releases the package."

McCain also shared a text message with a list of what was supposed to be dropped at a certain prison facility.

"They had a very, very specific list of what was supposed to be dropped at every location," the sheriff said.

Four people in total were identified as being part of the scheme, including Stegall, Hunter, Jayln Wilson, and Michaila Freeman. Their exact roles are not known.

Stegall and Hunter are due in court in Harris County for fugitive hearings Wednesday morning.

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