Independence County Sheriff: Jail expected to begin taking female prisoners again soon

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Independence County Sheriff Shawn Stephens said with a couple of more hires the county’s jail matron count will soon be at a level that the jail can start taking female prisoners again.

The county has budgeted for nine matrons to handle the female prisoners brought to the jail. The sheriff said most of the number that left did so to take jobs that paid more than matron’s pay.

He said his jail administrator has hired several matrons since the working number got down to three. Stephens said it now appears the number will soon be seven matrons on board with just two more hires left.

Once the matron quota of nine employees is full, the jail will start taking female prisoners once again.

Now, if a female is arrested, she is taken to another county like Jackson or Lawrence which take prisoners outside their county of jurisdiction. The sheriff says it usually costs $45 a day to have another county hold the prisoner.

But, that’s not the full cost. It is labor-intensive with a deputy needed to take the prisoner to another county, plus it takes a squad car out of daily use. Then it is sometimes back and forth with a prisoner, to and from court dates.

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