JACKSON PARISH, La. (KTVE/KARD) — The Jackson Parish Jail will soon be housing inmates at its brand new facility in Jonesboro.
Jackson Parish Sheriff Andy Brown says the construction of the new facility comes after the previous building could not house inmates any more.
“They got a contract with ICE, and they started housing detainees that were under the contract at some point. The government wanted us to take our prisoners out. We started housing our prisoners, local prisoners, out of parish. Then, I began plans over two years ago to do this.”
The $7 million facility aims to provide better safety and equipment. Brown says the facility will be safe and secure for officers and inmates.
“I’ve paid $6 million so far and not had to raise taxes or do anything. We had a surplus at the sheriff’s office, and we used the money for that purpose.”
Brown says a new technology would give officers access to every cell and dorm.
“For instance, if an inmate were to take something, and slip it under his mattress, and we’re not sure what that is, we can go and zoom in exactly to that spot, and try to identify what he was doing.”
In addition to the facility’s capability to house 400 inmates, Brown says a new section was built to hold up to 50 juveniles. He says they plan on implementing ministry workshops seven days a week to help put inmates and juveniles on a better path.
“Our goal is to put you back on the street as a reformed person. An inmate becomes successful, a changed life when they come out of here. That’s our prayer. That’s our hope. That’s our goal.”
The new facility holds 40 inmates at the moment. Brown says they hope to have 100 by Monday. He says the jail will be hiring more staff as it grows.
The official opening is August 1st.