The Baker County jail is busy now and will get even busier in the near future when federal inmates begin arriving from detention facilities being closed in South Florida and Folkston, Ga., according to Sheriff Joey Dobson. Read More »
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Crime in Baker County ticked up last year by nearly 30 percent despite efforts by the sheriff’s office to curtail the increase.
An administrative officer with the Baker County Sheriff’s Office says there’s no cause for alarm at a report that the Glades County jail that served as a model for the struggling Baker County facility is closing for lack of ICE inmates.
The facility will reportedly close in the next few months, according to a story in the Glades County Democrat published April 10.
Two days before, reporter Charles M. Murphy wrote, Glades County Sheriff Stuart Whiddon made the announcement at a meeting of the Glades County Commission, citing a loss of inmates from the federal agency Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE, that cost the jail $1 million during a two month period.
“We had a meeting with ICE in Miami last Friday and had a heart-to-heart with them and they told us it probably won’t get much better,” the sheriff was quoted as saying.
He explained the Glades County jail needs at least 400 inmates to stay afloat, but it has averaged about 200 in recent months.
Officials in Baker County, where federal inmates including ICE are housed, have said they need about 400 inmates in all, including local prisoners and those from other federal agencies, to remain financially viable. Read More »
Though a boost in the inmate population at the county jail last month has helped matters, the dip it took late last year translated into to a roughly $20,000 loss for the Baker Correctional Development Corporation for the first quarter of the fiscal year.