Former Rowan jail officer charged with providing drugs, phone to inmate

Published 12:12 am Saturday, August 6, 2016

By Shavonne Walker

SALISBURY — A former Rowan County Detention Center officer was recently charged with providing drugs and a cell phone to an inmate, whom authorities say is a known gang member and is charged with murder.

Heather Smith Burgos, 36, of the 8200 block of Fisher Road, Mount Pleasant, was charged July 16 with felony furnishing controlled substances to inmates and felony furnishing a cell phone to an inmate.

Warrants were issued for her arrest and were served by the Cabarrus County Sheriff’s Office. She was then placed into the Davidson County Detention Center. She was issued a $10,000 secured bond and has since been released.

Rowan officials said on July 11, detention center staff found an inmate with an older model cell phone, 38 grams of marijuana, two cigarette lighters and some loose tobacco. The staff immediately began investigating, which led them to officer Burgos, said Capt. John Sifford.

Burgos was questioned, was uncooperative and immediately resigned her position the night of July 11. Officials continued to investigate and issued warrants for her arrest. She was hired June 21, 2015.

Officials said the inmate who was in possession of the substances was Andre Rynell Bognuda, 25, who has been in the jail since his September 2013 arrest in the murder of Abraham “Abe” Jenkins. Jenkins, 19, was shot and killed not far from the boarding house where he was a resident at 916 West Horah St.

Bognuda is already in the jail under a $1 million bond on the murder charge. Burgos had a first a court appearance July 20 and is expected back in court Sept. 7.

No other officers were involved with the incident and no motive was given.