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      FCC discussing cell phone jamming in prisons

      COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) -- As they consider South Carolina's request to jam cell phone signals around state prisons, the Federal Communications Commission is meeting in Washington to discuss ways to combat the issue of smuggled cell phones.

      The FCC's Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau is holding a workshop Thursday. The agenda includes discussions about available technology and legal concerns related to jamming the signals.

      For more than two years regulators have been considering a request from South Carolina Corrections Director Jon Ozmint for permission to conduct a pilot jamming program inside a state prison.

      Gov. Mark Sanford last week urged the FCC to act. Sanford was joined by a prison officer authorities say was nearly killed in an attack planned with a smuggled cell phone.

      (Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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