A Christmas party for prisoners and their children inside the county jail has been canceled in part because cocaine was smuggled to inmates in the diapers of visiting toddlers the last time the jail held such an affair, officials said.
Cook County corrections officers said they had planned to hold a party for 50 inmates and their children Saturday but decided against it for security reasons. They also said it would not have been fair to other inmates who could not participate.The jail held a similar party in 1986 for women inmates and their children but found that cocaine had been hidden in diapers and hypodermic needles were given to prisoners by people escorting children, they said.
The drug allegations were disputed, however, by Gail Smith, executive director of an advocacy group called Chicago Legal Aid to Incarcerated Mothers.
"It is absolutely not true," she told Reuters. "I was there. There were no arrests made that day and there was absolutely no fallout afterwards."