A tip from a male inmate at the Hardin County Detention Center has led to the arrest of a deputy jailer, who was being held in the same jail where he worked.

David Eugene Ford Jr., 58, of Clark­son, was arrested early Wednesday morning at his home and charged with theft by unlawful taking of more than $10,000 and less than $1 million, a Class C felony punishable by five to 10 years in prison, if convicted.

According to an arrest citation, Ford reportedly stole more than $10,000 in cash March 16 from a home on Salt River Road.

Ford, who had worked at the jail since last June, “was fired about two minutes after he was brought in,” Hardin County Jailer Josh Lindblom said Wednesday.

A detention center inmate reportedly told him where the money could be found in the residence. The inmate then reached out to jail staff Tuesday afternoon and an investigation quickly was launched.

According to the Hardin County Sheriff’s Office, the arresting agency, an investigation began and a search warrant was issued at Ford’s residence and a “large amount of cash was recovered,” the citation said.

“We caught wind of it and we contacted the sheriff’s office right away and he was arrested pretty quick,” Lindblom said. “If an inmate wants to speak to us, we’re going to listen to what they say.”

Ford was being held on a partially secured $10,000 bond and bond was posted for him Wednesday afternoon. He is scheduled to appear April 3 in Hardin District Court.

Lindblom said Ford was placed in an isolation cell at the jail to be away from the general population since he is a former employee there. Also, because of the coronavirus restrictions, incoming inmates are placed in isolation for 14 days should if they remain at the jail.

A specific dollar amount of what was taken from the home was not released other than it was “in excess of $10,000.”

Jeff D’Alessio can be reached at 270-505-1757 or jdalessio@thenewsenterprise.com.

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