DOC director back to work after training, softball trip

BRENNAN: Samantha Brennan, director of the Department of Corrections, appears before the Legislature for a hearing on the DOC budget June 11 in Hagåtña. Post file photo

Department of Corrections Director Samantha Brennan is back to work after her two-week leave of absence.

Brennan, who was attending National Governors Association training in Washington, D.C., returned to work on Thursday, according to governor's communications director Janela Carrera.

Her first order of business was to meet with Gov. Lou Leon Guerrero, as her agency has faced some backlash and lost its deputy director while she was off island.

Deputy Director Joey Terlaje resigned in the midst of allegations made during testimony by an FBI agent that mentioned his alleged ties with indicted Yona Mayor Jesse Blas.

Mayor Blas was indicted in federal court on charges of extorting or receiving bribes in exchange for allowing alleged drug dealers to use his office's U.S. Postal Service mailboxes.

"Now that she's back she is ready to continue ensuring operations run smoothly," said Carrera.

She said Brennan wants to ensure her staff at DOC and the public that she will do what she can to keep prison operations going without any more mishaps.

Guam Police Department Capt. Joe Carbullido, who was tapped to temporarily serve as acting director during Brennan's absence, will remain at DOC to provide support and assistance. It's unclear when he will return to his duties at GPD.

Carrera also said no decision has been made on the selection of a new prison deputy director.

She said the governor will continue to meet with Brennan to find out more about the situation at the prison before they determine if now is the time to appoint a new deputy.

Brennan is also preparing for Vice Speaker Telena Nelson's oversight hearing scheduled for Oct. 9. The oversight hearing is expected to discuss problems at the prison to include the recent erroneous releases of inmates.

The prison director has not responded to The Guam Daily Post's request for comment. 

Brennan trip

During her trip to the nation's capital, Brennan participated in training funded by the National Governors Association. Carrera said the training catered to department heads who are under a new administration.

She also participated in a softball tournament in Las Vegas, Nevada, with other government of Guam employees. Carrera said the tournament is part of a "goodwill leave program" that participants fund on their own.

Taxpayer money was not used to fund any portion of the trip, Carrera said.

The governor asked Brennan to return to Guam early in light of the recent events at DOC.

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