Asotin County officials weigh options for overcrowded jail

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With population numbers on the rise in the Asotin County Jail, officials are weighing their options.

The jail has been severely over-populated for the past few years and Sheriff John Hildebrand said that he and a team are working to find a solution.

The committee has narrowed options down to looking at a regional facility with other counties and agencies.

But Sheriff Hilderbrand said this project, whatever route they take, is something that will happen years down the road, and not an overnight fix and likely won’t even be completed during his tenure as sheriff.

The Asotin County Jail’s capacity is 47 inmates but Hilderbrand said Wednesday it’s capped at around 60. Around a dozen other inmates are staying at other facilities.

Sheriff Hilderbrand said his top priority is safety.

“Right now, if we can just eliminate some of the overcrowding,” he said. “Whenever you get the crowding facilities, then it becomes a danger to my deputies, it becomes a danger to my inmates just from the overcrowding.”

The committee has recently toured the Nez Perce County Detention Center.

Hilderbrand said if they follow the model Nez Perce County took with building their new jail, he’d expect Asotin County will have a new facility sometime in the mid 2020’s.

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