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Marshall County Sheriff blames under funding for jail incident

Inmates and jail staff were involved in an altercation Wednesday morning, Sheriff Scott Walls said.

Posted: Jul. 11, 2018 3:35 PM
Updated: Jul. 11, 2018 11:03 PM

Everything was under control at the Marshall County Jail Wednesday afternoon after a confrontation between inmates and jail staff, the county sheriff said.

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Inmates "physically engaged" deputies and staff at the Marshall County Jail Wednesday morning during a shakedown, Marshall County Sheriff Scott Walls said in a news release.

Sheriff Scott Walls said the inmates became more aggressive during the conflict, and the sheriff's office asked for help from every police department in the county.

"During the conflict neither law enforcement officers nor inmates were injured," Walls said in the statement, which was issued just before 3 p.m. "We are currently in the process of searching and securing each prisoner back into cells."

The Sheriff sights low wages, under funding, and prison reforms for incidents like this. He specifically called out the Marshall County Commission for blocking funding.

The Chairman of the Commission said the department get over five million dollars annually to run the jail and the rest of its opperations, which is over half of the county's ten million dollar budget for the entire county.

On top of the five million the commission spends money on other items for the department.

"We buy them new cars every year. 5 new vehicles every year. We redid the cafeteria, spent over a quarter million dollars redoing it. We put a new lock system in the jail. Just got that finished for a quarter million dollars. We put new fence around the jail 6 to 8 months ago, about 40,000 dollars. We put new heatin and coolin units all in the jail," said Marshall County Commission Chairman James Hutcheson.

The Sheriff did not reply to comment Wednesday when WAAY 31 asked him about Hutcheson's comments.

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