Drone crashes into Rankin County prison, lands operators in jail


PEARL, Miss. (WJTV) – According to the Mississippi Department of Corrections, two drone pilots attempted to use technology to drop marijuana and other contraband to their friends at Central Mississippi Correctional Facility at Pearl. Now, they’re in jail.

John Travis Ross, 33, and Joshua Ray Corban, 18, were charged with conspiracy and attempting to smuggle contraband into a prison.

MDOC officials said the drone carried a payload of two ounces of marijuana buds, a cellphone, phone chargers, headphones, and several cigarette lighters. The drone got caught in security nets above the facility’s razor-wire fences.

MDOC has confiscated the drone and will reprogram it to work for them by patroling the skies over Parchman.

The Rankin County Sheriff’s Office used its own technology to trace the drone’s flight path, and Ross and Corban were eventually identified as suspects. MDOC Commissioner Burl Cain said the two confessed and are now facing time in prison, if convicted.

Investigators said Ross has been on parole since October 2018 for sale of a controlled substance in Warren County. He and Corban made an initial appearance in Rankin County Court on Tuesday.

MDOC Director of Investigations John Hunt says this is the third drone MDOC has intercepted at a Mississippi prison in recent years. 

Click here to view the security footage, the seized contraband, and more.


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