Airway Heights guard sentenced to two months for smuggling drugs into prison

Airway Heights Corrections Center
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SPOKANE, Wash. — An Airway Heights prison guard will spend two months in prison for smuggling drugs into the corrections center.

Michael Mattern pleaded guilty in February to conspiracy to distribute 5 grams or more of actual methamphetamine, heroin and Suboxone. This charge normally carries a sentence of up to 40 years and no less than five.

However, the judge sentenced Mattern to two months in prison with three days of time served, though it is not clear why the sentence was lowered.

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Mattern, who worked at the prison for 20 years, was arrested in late July when federal investigators found him smuggling drugs into the prison in his lunch pail. They used recorded phone calls between a prisoner and a woman on the outside to help build their case against Mattern.

According to the previously filed federal indictment, it says that multiple confidential informants who are inmates at the prison informed investigators that a guard in the “R” unit was bringing in drugs. Some specifically identified Mattern. That led to the start of the investigation, which federal agents say “Mattern has been compromised as a corrections officer and is introducing controlled substances into AHCC’s secure facility in exchange for money, drugs, and sex.”

The woman involved in the crime was sentenced to 30 months in prison.

Mattern will be under supervised release for life, serve 300 hours of community service and be under home confinement for up to six months with location monitoring, according to a judgment filed in federal court.

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