Former Omaha Corrections employee arrested for alleged relationship with convicted murderer

Authorities say the inmate is potentially the father of the ex-employee’s child
A former Nebraska Department of Corrections employee has been arrested for an accused relationship with a convicted killer.
Published: Mar. 3, 2023 at 11:59 AM CST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - An ex-employee with the Omaha Correctional Center has been accused of having a relationship with an inmate and was arrested after recently giving birth.

According to court documents, an arrest warrant was issued Thursday for 31-year-old Samantha Cedillo of Council Bluffs, Iowa. She was a former programs coordinator at the Omaha Correctional Center.

Samantha Debra Cedillo
Samantha Debra Cedillo(Pottawattamie County Sheriff's Office)

In November 2021, confidential informants allegedly reported that Cedillo was in a relationship with an inmate who was convicted for murder.

During her work at the Correctional Center, Cedillo supervised three inmates, including the one allegedly involved in the relationship. The inmate involved served as the library clerk in the facility. Cedillo also had an office in the library.

Correctional Center staff reviewed phone calls and video for roughly two months and records provided by them to the courts accused the inmate and Cedillo of spending a “significant amount of time” together on multiple occasions. They also accused Cedillo of going into her office with the inmate and closing the door, which is a violation of the Correctional Center’s code of conduct.

In December 2021, Cedillo was given a “verbal counseling” after the two were found in the library alone for nearly an hour.

Later in January 2022, the inmate was removed from his library clerk position, allegedly due to “continued boundary issues” between him and Cedillo, who was also given a write-up allegedly for her negative behavior after the inmate’s termination as library clerk.

Several other alleged incidents were reported or observed by Correctional Center Staff from January to March 2022, including an incident in which the two spent nearly six hours together in Cedillo’s office.

The last alleged incident was on March 30, 2022, in which Cedillo and the inmate were seen on video together in her office. Court documents allege that Cedillo was seen with the inmate moving behind her office door and out of view of the camera. Three minutes later Cedillo could be seen on camera moving back to her chair while adjusting her clothes.

That same day Cedillo was asked to provide a report on why the inmate was in her office but wasn’t told staff had seen video of the incident. Cedillo allegedly became angry, stating she was tired of explaining why the inmate was in her office, and she submitted her resignation.

Later in July 2022, a cell phone was allegedly found in the inmate’s cell. Staff attempted to search it but the inmate allegedly broke the device. The SIM card was salvaged from the broken phone and authorities retrieved messages that allegedly detailed his relationship with Cedillo.

Court records explained Cedillo and the inmate were approved to communicate with each other via phone or mail. Phone calls, messages and letters between the inmate and Cedillo were reviewed and authorities allegedly learned that she and the inmate’s family spent a lot of time visiting one another.

In the messages, Cedillo and the inmate allegedly told each other how much they loved each other and they even spoke about her pregnancy and baby shower. The inmate and Cedillo also allegedly acknowledged November 22 as their anniversary.

Cedillo gave birth to a child in December 2022 and court records showed that the inmate couldn’t be excluded as the father. A court order was obtained for DNA swabs from the inmate and the infant and they were sent to Nebraska Medical Center for comparison. Another court order was obtained for future swabs from Cedillo for further DNA comparison.