Former corrections officers plead guilty in federal court

Former correctional officers find themselves on the wrong side of the law. They find themselves facing stiff prison sentences after pleading guilty to drug distribution in federal court on Friday.

Selena Black, 22, and former co-worker Angelique Pate, 25, once corrections officers at the Macon State Prison are now find themselves facing serious prison time. The young women are among 45 people arrested in an undercover operation.

Federal prosecutors said they accepted bribe payments in exchange for providing protection for drug deals. Black and Pate both walked into the federal courthouse in Newnan Friday morning, not speaking to reporters before the hearing. Pate's attorney speaking on his client's behalf.

Defense Attorney Lawrence Zimmerman said, “It was just a bad choice she made. I don't think she has an answer for that. She's accepted responsibility for a bad decision.”

Both plead guilty to drug distribution under a plea agreement. Prosecutors told the court the women admitted accepting money from an undercover operative during separate instances during 2014 and 2015. Pate's attorney said his client is remorseful.

Zimmerman said, “She’s very distraught. She knows she made a really bad choice. She's a correctional officer and it's a bad thing. She understands that.”