WAAY 31 is taking a closer look at an application that allowed a Lawrence County teenager to communicate with a sex offender who was in jail.
Police say 16-year-old Peyton Ledlow used the app “Jail Funds” to video chat with Kaleb Gillespie before they went on the run.
It’s as easy as downloading the Jail Funds app on your phone, entering your personal information, and selecting the inmate you want to speak with. And it would cost us just $5.70 to call Kaleb Gillespie.
“He should have never been able to talk to no teenage girls from a jail cell…That is insane to me,” says Donna Dover.
Donna Dover has good reason to be concerned about Kaleb Gillespie communicating with a teenager, while behind bars. Gillespie raped her teenage daughter in 2008. It’s why he’s behind bars and on the Alabama Sex Offender Registry.
The Morgan County Sheriff’s office said inmates have been allowed to use the Jail Funds app since July. It makes it easier for them to communicate with friends and family, and get money. Anyone can make an account, put in their personal information, and schedule a call with any inmate.
The app is owned by Vendengine. Its website says children under 13 need parent or guardian’s permission. We reached out to them about their age policy and are waiting to hear back.
Dover says she’s been in contact with the Morgan County district attorney since Gillespie’s escape last week, and capture on Monday. Now she’s left wondering how the man serving time for raping her daughter, was able to communicate with another teen girl.
“That he was allowed to talk to minors and him a sex offender…. I don’t even know what to say about that,” adds Dover.
We’ve asked the Morgan County Sheriff’s Office if they’re now concerned about using the Jail Funds app, and if they’ll be making any changes.
They told us they are working with their offsite video visitation vendor to review the safeguards they have in place.