St. Clair County Jail to release dozens of prisoners weekly due to overcrowding

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by KMOV.com staff

KMOV.com

Posted on February 13, 2014 at 4:38 AM

Updated Thursday, Feb 13 at 7:36 PM

(KMOV.com) – Officials at the jail in St. Clair County plan to release close to 50 prisoners a week starting Thursday due to overcrowding.

St. Clair County Sheriff Rick Watson told News 4  the jail is equipped to hold 418 prisoners but currently houses close to 560. Watson says they are releasing “non-violent people who do property crime, steal, things like that”.

Sheriff Watson says the only way to avoid the weekly release of prisoners is to expand the jail. Watson hopes voters will agree to a 25-cent sale tax increase during the March 18 general primary in Illinois to help pay for a jail expansion.

If the tax increase does not pass, the federal government is expected to step in and demand a new jail at the expense of property owners in the county. 

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