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Dozens of Macomb County inmates to be released

Jack Amick
Creative Commons

Dozens of Macomb County jail inmates will be released soon due to overcrowding.

An overcrowding emergency was declared on June 2. The county's district and circuit judges had 15 days to reduce the number of inmates.

The 15-day period ended on Tuesday, and the judges failed to release enough inmates.

Therefore, Macomb County Circuit Court Chief Judge James Biernat Jr. will determine which inmates are released.

Macomb County Sheriff Anthony Wickersham says the number of inmates must be reduced to 1,193 inmates; on Tuesday the jail had about 1,260 prisoners.

He also says this is the 15th time since 2003 that the jail has declared an overcrowding emergency.

"The whole criminal justice community in Macomb County are aware of some our shortcomings and some of our challenges as it relates to housing inmates," Wickersham said.

He says that budget cuts and a growing population have contributed to the overcrowding.

Wickersham also said that a consulting firm will give recommendations on how to analyze the jail's practices. The firm should give its recommendations by spring of next year.

"It's something we're probably going to deal with for the next couple years, but we are looking for a solution and hoping to bring that solution forward," Wickersham said. 

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