No consensus on solutions for troubled Jackson County jail

Bill Grady
May 15, 2018 - 5:38 am

The scathing grand jury report on the Jackson County Detention Center is still making waves.

Issued late in the business day Friday, the 72-page report addressed jail overcrowding, understaffing and poor management of funds. The facility was found to be filthy, with a crumbling infrastructure.

KMBZ spoke exclusively with Jackson County Prosecutor Jean Peters Baker, who has been critical of how the jail has been operated. She says one problem is the unusual way the jail is run, by a seperate corrections director that's not under the county sheriff's department.

"They have a law enforcement background when they go into that job, that's required to be the sheriff," Baker said. "I think that would be very helpful for running the jail, in fact, it's how most every jail in the country is run."

Baker stopped short of saying that interim Sheriff Daryl Forte should run the jail, which has had problems for years. She is willing to discuss it with him, if he is elected in November. 

"There's a lot of finger-pointing going around, and it would be better if we just took some of the recommendations from the report and really just got to work," Baker said.

County executive Frank White strongly disagreed with some of the findings and accused prosecutor Jean Peters Baker of using the report for political gain. 

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