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County Grand Jury: Population At Adult Detention Facilities Exceed Capacity

The door of the San Diego County Sheriff's Department in Kearny Mesa, Dec. 31...

Photo by Tarryn Mento

Above: The door of the San Diego County Sheriff's Department in Kearny Mesa, Dec. 31, 2014.

The Sheriff's Department should work to bring the population at adult detention facilities into compliance with state-rated capacity figures, the San Diego County grand jury recommended Tuesday.

The grand jurors found the inmate population at several jails exceeded the Board of State Community Corrections-rated capacity when they visited the facilities.

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The grand jury toured seven adult facilities operated by the Sheriff's Department and four juvenile detention facilities operated by the county Probation Department in preparation for its annual report on the condition and management of county detention facilities.

Grand jury members observed no outdoor recreation areas in several adult detention facilities and recommended that the Sheriff's Department consider developing an incentive-based physical education program tied to inmates' personal goals.

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The Sheriff's Department should also improve the way it assesses recidivism to permit evaluation of the success of re-entry programs, the grand jury said in its report.

The grand jury also recommended that the Probation Department improve programs aimed at reducing violence in the East Mesa Juvenile Detention Facility. There were nearly 100 violent incidents in that facility last year, mostly triggered by gang affiliation, the report said.

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In general, the grand jury found the detention facilities were clean and in good condition, adequately staffed, following established procedures and providing inmates access to medical, dental and mental health care.

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