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Drone used to smuggle drugs into Ohio prison

A drone. (MGN)

Ohio Correctional officials said someone used a drone to drop a package full of drugs and tobacco into the recreation yard at the Mansfield Correctional Institution.

Officials said the drugs were found after a fight broke out in the yard July 27. It was only after guards reviewed the security video that they saw the drone drop the package.

They said incidents like this involving drones have happened “less than five times” and the prison's top security personnel are trying to prevent future situations like it.

“You’d have to be pretty savvy and know a lot about the scenario to pull something like that off,” said Kyle Belman, an experienced drone pilot and drone salesman at Cyclone Hobbies on Karl Road in North Columbus. “They don’t fly themselves and you look on YouTube, number one drone fail videos, and it’s countless amounts of drones smacking into a high-rise.”

Dropping drugs into a prison yard is clearly illegal, but some of the rules for flying drones are still up in the air. For now, the FAA said you can only fly it as long as you can still see it.

“You really have to be bothering somebody [to be cited],” Belman said. “It’s the same thing like speeding through a neighborhood, you know you’re not supposed to be doing it.”

Prison officials said nine inmates were involved in the fight over the drugs dropped into the prison.

So far, no word on whether they’ve figured out who was flying that drone.

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