Woman pleads guilty in prison contraband case

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WALLA WALLA — A Spokane woman accused of intentionally leaving marijuana and chewing tobacco for distribution at the Washington State Penitentiary in June pleaded guilty Monday afternoon in Walla Walla County Superior Court.

Andrea M. Olsen, 44, entered the guilty plea to the charge of second-degree introducing contraband.

She faces a standard-range jail term of one to three months when she’s sentenced later.

In a plea agreement, the prosecution is recommending 45 days and will drop a companion charge of possession of a controlled substance by a person not a prisoner, in addition to second-degree criminal trespass.

The 45 days could be served on electronic home monitoring, according to the recommendation.

Olsen’s fiance, Steven D. Hackett, 52, also of Spokane, is set for trial Dec. 9 and 10 on a charge of delivery of marijuana while in a state correctional facility, in addition to the possession and trespass counts.

Officials said that on June 2, Hackett and Olsen were in a vehicle — which was under surveillance — that stopped near a composting facility at the north perimeter of the prison between 9 p.m. and 10 p.m.

“After the vehicle left, investigators checked the area and found several black plastic bags with colored balloons inside, containing marijuana and tobacco,” according to a Walla Walla police report filed in court.

Hackett and Olsen were arrested the following day after they arrived at the prison to visit inmate Jarred T. Many, who is Olsen’s son.

In the vehicle, authorities said, were the same types of bags located at the composting facility.

They believe Many was the intended recipient of the contraband. Apparently no correctional officers were involved in the scheme.

The discovery was the culmination of an investigation that began in April involving monitored phones calls between Olsen and Many, as well as other information investigators received, according to the police report.

Hackett and Olsen were booked into the Walla Walla County Jail, but later were released pending the outcomes of their cases.

Terry McConn can be reached at terrymcconn@wwub.com or 526-8319.


This story was updated 10/9/13 to reflect the following correction:

Due to an editing error, a headline on Page A7 in Tuesday’s paper incorrectly stated the status of a case involving a woman charged with second-degree introducing contraband to the Washington State Penitentiary. The woman pleaded guilty. The Union-Bulletin regrets the error.

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