Sound Off: County jail capacity
<b>Regarding the Douglas County Jail, we’re paying to house inmates in Jefferson County and I’m curious why we’re doing that when we aren’t at capacity here.</b>
Lt. Steve Lewis, public information officer for the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, explained that housing inmates in out-of-county jails is a management tool that is used sparingly in order to maintain available space for new arrestees entering the local facility.
“The Douglas County Correctional Facility uses the Direct Supervision style of inmate management,” Lewis said. “In Direct Supervision individuals staying in our facility go through a classification process to determine the appropriate housing unit placement. We have a number of different classification levels and housing units, including minimum, medium, maximum, special management, work release and pre-classification.
“An individual entering our facility is first assigned to pre-classification and then moved to another housing unit once the classification process is complete. We must maintain an adequate number of open pre-classification cells in order to handle incoming arrestees, especially for weekends. If a particular housing unit is approaching capacity we may look at housing an inmate out of county in order to keep open cells available for newly classified inmates.”