KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — The Cocke County Sheriff’s Office has charged two people in connection with five female inmates overdosing on Wednesday.
Ella Michella Ellison, 51, is accused of bringing “multiple baggies” into the jail in “her female parts,” according to a Cocke County arrest warrant. Ellison is charged with Introduction of Contraband.
Also charged is Amanda Jean Pope, 30, of Newport. Pope is accused of helping Ellison “pull multiple baggies out of her female parts.” Pope is charged with criminal conspiracy.
The sheriff’s office found in their initial investigation that a female inmate brought in around noon “had the unknown substance in an undisclosed area that cannot be detected without an X-ray or body scanner.”
Arrest reports say that inmates started “falling out and requiring medical care” around 5:45 p.m. on Wednesday, about 10-15 minutes after Pope and Ellison went to the bathroom.
In total, 17 nasal Injections and three injections of Narcan were administered. No inmates died, however three of the five inmates were taken to the hospital for observation.
The sheriff shared that after the medical emergency was handled, Cocke County and Jefferson County K-9 officers searched the cells.
“A grant is in the process that should provide a body scanner and will be installed in the annex once we are approved. This is going to be a big help in trying to locate drugs that come into the detention center,” wrote the sheriff’s office.
Nursing in the facility, correction officers, Newport Fire Department, Newport Police Department, Cocke County Sheriff’s Office, Priority Ambulance and outside county ambulance services responded to the detention center for the overdoses.