Speech to Text for Jackson County's Jail Problem
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open-open in. newswatch 12's mike duffy is standing by at the jail right now. mike - what does this mean for the entire community? rachel...this building was built nearly 40 years ago. it was originally supposed to house about 160 inmates. it has been repeatedly expanded but it's not doing it's original job... and this affects the entire system. [a11]jail problems follow up-pkg "the criminal justice system in jackson county is broken. and getting a new jail would be a major fix." the overcrowding is changing the way we deal with crimes. "we your car, we get your car back we arrest the person. people expect that person to go to jail and not be seen at least for some amount of time. but when they see the person hours later or a day later walking down the street, they think something's really wrong with that. as they should." one of the biggest problems right now? as judge lorenzo may-he-uh explains, people just aren't showing up for their court dates. "sometimes we have a hundred cases set for arraignment. we'll be lucky if 50% of those people show up." a new jail would allow the courts to hold people arrested for crimes behind bars. the cost would be 100 million dollars. "i understand it is a big expense. and i am not a lock em up and throw away the key guy. but basically, if the criminal justice system does not function, that is a real tax on the community, an ongoing tax, where there is no benefit." and those costs add up. we absolutely need it. and if we don't do something about it, crime will continue to rise and get worse, and that affects us all." "i really think that if you take the long term view, talk about a jail that will be able to function and serve this community for the long run, it would contribute a lot to the liveability of our community." sheriff sickler tells me that a healthy jail operates at around 15 to 20 percent under capacity - which would mean about 60 less people. he says this would also allow them to help people get the help they need instead of getting stuck in the system. live in medford, mike duffy, newswatch 12. [a13]devloping-stinger new