Old Angelina County Jail has uncertain future - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

Old Angelina County Jail has uncertain future

By Morgan Thomas - bio | email

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) – The old Angelina County jail opened back in 1984. When the new county jail opened seven years ago, a company who housed overflow inmates approached the county to use the facility.

"We hired them to come in and run the old jail as contract basis for us," said Sheriff Kent Henson, Angelina County.

Fort Bend County paid the company to house their overflow inmates, Angelina County raked in between $8-9,000.00 in rent. Last fall - all of those prisoners left.

"Fort Bend County opened a new jail so they no longer need to house inmates outside their own facility," said Judge Wes Suiter, Angelina Co.

The company stuck around since then, waiting for an agreement with other counties to come through.

"They had trouble finding other contracts with other jurisdictions to house their inmates," said Judge Suiter.

The old jail can house 108 prisoners, and both the Sheriff and the Judge of Angelina County hope they can get it filled again.

"the best case scenario would be to find another organization that could come in and immediately take up and have that facility full of inmates," said Judge Suiter.

That option and others will be discussed in a meeting with commissioners next week.

"I think it would be beneficial to everyone here to keep it functional because it creates jobs and puts money into the economy here," said Sheriff Henson.

"We just need to know the direction we go with this facility is the proper one," said Judge Suiter.

Other alternatives being considered for the old jail are a central booking station or holding cells, or it could be turned into office space for the county.

©2010 KTRE. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Powered by Frankly