Smuggling cell phones into California prisons will now result in fines and extra prison time under a bill signed Thursday by Governor Jerry Brown.
Democratic State Senator Alex Padilla says cracking down on cell phone use in prisons will help prevent crime.
“Cell phones are being used by inmates to facilitate drug trafficking, coordinate street gang activity, plan escapes from state prisons, to intimidate witnesses before trial – notorious, notorious activity,” said Padilla.
Padilla’s bill also allows the state to use new technology to block cell phone signals and communications in prisons. Under that provision, the governor is issuing an executive order telling the state Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation to pursue that goal.
Brown is also directing the Corrections Department to examine the possibility of implementing “airport-style security screening” at state prisons.