BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — A suspended Erie County jail deputy was arraigned Monday after he allegedly conspired to sell contraband to inmates, the Erie County District Attorney’s Office announced.
It is alleged that 33-year-old Niko J. Carter of Cheektowaga knowingly brought “dangerous” contraband into the Erie County Holding Center and plotted to sell it to inmates, according to officials.
Carter was placed on unpaid administrative leave by the Erie County Sheriff’s Office as a result.
“I’m disappointed in what happened,” Erie County Sheriff John Garcia said. “Here’s a young man who had a great opportunity to work a profession, an honorable profession. He didn’t last eight months … He will be going from wearing the very proud black and gold of the Erie County Sheriff’s Office to what I hope is wearing orange.”
Erie County District Attorney John Flynn said that Carter was working alongside someone within the holding center to distribute the contraband, but Flynn declined to specify who that person was. Garcia later said that information regarding the other individual “will come out.”
The contraband was also not identified by Flynn.
Carter was charged with one count each of first-degree promoting prison contraband, fourth-degree conspiracy and official misconduct. He is expected to return to court Nov. 2 and was released on his own recognizance.
If convicted, Carter faces a maximum of seven years in prison.
“If there’s going to be criminal behavior done by anyone that works in the Sheriff’s Office, they will be arrested, they will be prosecuted,” Garcia said.