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Uniontown man tells judge prosthetic leg hid phone in jail

Tuesday, April 2, 2013, 12:01 a.m.
 

A Uniontown man who was accused of hiding a cellphone and charger in his prosthetic leg at the Fayette County Prison told a judge he had the phone for a year before it was discovered.

Christopher Glen Greer, 28, appeared before Judge John F. Wagner Jr. on Monday to plead guilty to a charge of disorderly conduct in exchange for paying a fine and costs.

In a criminal complaint, Fayette County Detective James Caccimelio said two corrections officers “found a phone and charger in part of a prosthetic leg belonging to Greer” during a search of his cell on Feb. 23, 2012.

Greer told Wagner he smuggled the phone into the jail in the pocket of a pair of cargo pants when he reported to start a sentence for driving on a suspended license.

“Apparently, they picked somebody who has no sense of touch,” Wagner said of the unknown guard who searched Greer that day.

Greer said he took the phone into the prison because inmates are charged about $4 per call made from the prison. He said he managed to keep the phone hidden from corrections officers for a year.

When he was later transferred to a state prison, Greer said, he was unable to take a phone with him.

“They search a lot better?” Wagner asked.

“Yeah, a lot better,” Greer replied.

Contacted after the hearing, Fayette Warden Brian Miller said he does not believe that Greer brought the phone into the prison in a pants pocket.

Miller said corrections officers would not have missed it on intake. Nor would they have failed to search the prosthetic leg upon Greer's admission to the prison, he said.

“We believe that the phone was brought in to him somehow, either through visiting or something like that,” Miller said. “We never found out because he won't talk, so there's really no way to tell.”

The assistant district attorney who handled Greer's plea and sentencing, Mark Mehalov, gave no details during the hearing regarding the decision to drop the contraband charge and allow Greer to plead guilty to the lesser charge of disorderly conduct.

Liz Zemba is a reporter for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-601-2166 or lzemba@tribweb.com.

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