Carter wants to look into county inmate numbers

The number of county inmates in the Logan County Detention Center is a concern of magistrate Dickie Carter, and he thinks a meeting needs to be held to find out why there are so many.

At a recent Logan County Fiscal Court meeting, the first district magistrate asked once again, why there were so many county inmates in Logan’s jail. He mentioned numbers for neighboring counties were much lower and thought some dialogue needed to be had concerning the issue. It was said in court that Simpson County only had 18 while Todd County’s numbers were in the 30s.

At the Tuesday, June 23rd court meeting, jailer Phil Gregory said there were currently 87 county inmates in the Logan jail, with 65 being classified as state. This number fluctuates, however, the county classification always out numbers the state classification.

When an inmate has been processed and sentenced, they are considered “state” and a portion of their daily stay in the jail is paid for from state funding. Until they are processed, and while awaiting their court date, an inmate is considered “county” with most of their stay paid for out of local taxpayer dollars.

“I still think we need to work on these county inmates,” said Carter Tuesday. Maybe we can meet and figure something out. We are having to turn down state inmates because of the number of county inmates, and it’s the state ones that pay,” said Carter. “It’s not that I want to let bad people out of jail.”

Magistrate Drexel Johnson told Carter he couldn’t have it both ways.

“They are in their for a reason,” said magistrate Jack Crossley.

Judge Executive Logan Chick told Carter, “you just can’t turn them loose.”

Carter said that was not what he wanted, but instead to find out what other counties were doing to keep their numbers low.

“I guess we can leave them out on the street,” said magistrate Barry Joe Wright.

Carter told the court not to make light of the issue.

Magistrate Thomas Bouldin said you had to compare county population to get a real look at the inmate population.

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