A former Lake County correctional officer was arrested and charged after an investigation showed she had sexual contact with an inmate in December, officials said.
Elizabeth A. Blomstrand, 40, of the 100 block of Knobb Hill Lane in Gurnee, was charged with two counts of custodial sexual misconduct and two counts of official misconduct.
In December, a correctional officer went to a jail cell to take over for Blomstrand for the evening, Lake County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Lt. Christopher Covelli said.
When the correctional officer entered the cell, the inmate belonging to it was missing, well after all of the inmates should have been sleeping, Covelli said.
The correctional officer notified his supervisor and the Lake County Sheriff’s Office of Professional Standards initiated an investigation on Blomstrand.
After hearing the details, Sheriff John D. Idleburg authorized a formal internal investigation into the case.
Blomstrand was placed on administrative leave when the investigation started, but she later resigned on December 29, Covelli said.
Despite her resignation, the investigation continued and turned into a criminal investigation when the sheriff’s office discovered evidence of criminal conduct.
“The investigation consisted of interviewing correctional officers, inmates, viewing video surveillance, and reviewing inmate telephone calls,” Covelli said.
The investigation revealed that Blomstrand engaged in sexual contact with an inmate at least two times in December.
The Lake County State’s Attorney’s Office issued an arrest warrant for Blomstrand on Friday.
A judge authorized the warrant and sheriff’s office warrants team members began surveillance in an area Blomstrand was believed to be.
Warrants deputies observed Blomstrand driving in the area and initiated a traffic stop. Deputies took the woman into custody without incident.
She was initially processed at the Lake County Jail but due to her prior employment, she is currently held at the McHenry County Jail.
Blomstrand remains held at the McHenry County Jail pending an initial court hearing this morning. Her bond was set at $50,000, meaning she would need to post $5,000 to be released.
“We are responsible for enforcing the law, following the law, and keeping people safe, including our inmates. I have zero-tolerance for anyone within our ranks who violate the law and the public’s trust,” Lake County Sheriff John Idleburg said.
“This former employee certainly does not represent the values of the hard-working men and women within our organization,” he added.