Guard accused of carrying on relationship with inmate at Shakopee women's prison: charges

A prison guard at the Minnesota Correctional Facility in Shakopee is facing charges for carrying on a romantic relationship with an inmate at the women's facility.

Correctional Officer Daniel Vasquez Pichardo is charged with criminal sexual conduct for the relationship, under the state statute for a prohibited occupational relationship as a prison guard.

In the criminal complaint, investigators say Vasquez Pichardo admitted to the relationship with the inmate. Authorities say their investigation revealed Vasquez Pichardo has been communicating with the inmate using a fake JPay account, the service inmates use for email and money services.

The complaint alleges the guard also admitted to sending the inmate photos of his private parts using Snapchat and touching her butt while on duty, going to areas outside of camera view to engage in the inappropriate conduct.

According to charges, the guard said the two had been in a relationship since December 2022 adding they would occasionally write love letters to each other.