Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Breaking News

Local News

October 8, 2013

Easing overcrowding

Renovations, new buildings, new programs help lower county jail populations

The overcrowding issues facing area county jails in the last couple of years have subsided this year, county officials say.

Renovations to the Howard County jail and a new jail in Miami County have helped alleviate most of the overcrowding, and a proposal to build a new jail in Tipton will address that county’s space issues.

Remedies are coming none too soon, as the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana has filed suits against several Indiana counties where jail populations exceeded designed capacities.

In Howard County, the jail housed 370 inmates including 80 women as of last Tuesday, Capt. Harold Vincent, jail commander of the Howard County jail said.

The jail was built in 1993 to house 324 inmates, including 34 women.

To house the ever-increasing number of females at the jail, jail officials earlier this year renovated an indoor recreation room into a 36-bed cell.

The existing cells where males were housed will now be used to house female inmates, Vincent said.

“We still have a lot of women, but [now] we’re able to put them in the same unit,” he said.

The renovation also allowed the jail to warehouse some IDOC inmates at a rate of $35 per day per inmate. With 20 or so IDOC inmates, the jail was collecting up to $700 a day, he said.

But an increase in the number of inmates forced the county to return the 20 inmates, all male, to IDOC, to free up more room for local offenders, Vincent said.

Sentencing offenders to probation and in-home detention through community corrections and the drug court has also helped keep the numbers down.

The drug court, which began in 2007, requires addicts to undergo rehab in three phases of treatment. If they successfully complete the program, their drug offense is dismissed. If not, they will be tried for the charge and likely go to jail or prison. Without the program, those offenders would be housed at the jail anywhere from six months to three years, depending on the charge.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
  • FEMA's disaster decisions frustrate state, local leaders Pamela Jackson thought she was lucky to escape harm as a tornado bore down on her neighborhood last November. She huddled in a bathroom with her two disabled sons, critically ill husband and six other family members as the twister blew out windows an

    April 23, 2014

  • timthumb.jpg INDOT to install curbs on Markland

    Indiana Department of Transportation maintenance crews have been scheduled to install traffic separator curbs between opposing lanes of State Road 22/Markland Avenue during the week of April 28. Placement of the highly visible manufactured curbing is

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Farmers Market 01 Kokomo Downtown Farmers' Market gets facelift Pint-sized gardeners made homemade Chia Pets at the Kokomo Downtown Farmers' Market Saturday morning while their parents shopped for homegrown produce nearby. The kids packed grass seeds and dirt inside the disposable socks you get at shoe stores. Th

    April 23, 2014 3 Photos

  • FEMA grants disaster aid to Tipton County The Federal Emergency Management Agency has approved disaster aid for 19 Indiana counties hit by a January storm that brought paralyzing snow and frigid temperatures. Governor Mike Pence received word Tuesday that FEMA had granted his appeal for fede

    April 23, 2014

  • Native American inmate sues Miami Correctional Facility BUNKER HILL - A Native American inmate is suing the Miami Correctional Facility for violating his constitutional religious freedom after the prison last year terminated Native American worship services. Daniel Littlepage says in a class action lawsui

    April 23, 2014

  • Take Back the Night 17 Crowd rallies around domestic violence victims

    Doran Gwyn vividly remembers the night his stepdad came home from work and sat down at the table for supper. "He looked at the meal and said, 'What is this,'" Gwyn recalled. Then he took a bowl of food and smashed it against the ceiling in a rage and

    April 23, 2014 3 Photos

  • Tipton commission appointments get tangled up in confusion Months of confusion over a pair of appointments to two economic development commissions in Tipton County appear to be coming to an end, but not without its share of confusion. Single appointments to both the Tipton County Economic Development Commiss

    April 23, 2014

  • FEMA OKs aid for Tipton, 18 counties, but not Howard Co.

    The Federal Emergency Management Agency has approved disaster aid for 19 Indiana counties hit by a January storm that brought paralyzing snow and frigid readings.

    April 22, 2014

  • Energy-saving program powering down this year Ever wonder how energy efficient your house is? You can find out. For free. But not for long. Energizing Indiana, a 2-year-old initiative of the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission, offers any homeowner in the state a free energy assessment for the

    April 22, 2014

  • Ways to celebrate Earth Day everyday “Help save the planet.” It’s a common phrase that sounds impossible to most of us. After all, what can one person really do to make an impact on the huge environmental issues facing people all over the world? But going green doesn't have to be a daun

    April 22, 2014

Latest news
Featured Ads
Only on our website
AP Video
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Obituaries