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Coshocton County Sheriff's Office
328 Chestnut Street
Coshocton, Ohio 43812
[email protected]

Justice Center

The Coshocton County Sheriff’s Office (also known as The Coshocton County Justice Center) was opened in 1973. This facility replaced the old jail, which was constructed in 1873. At the time of the opening of the Justice Center the facility could house the following inmates, 8 females, 32 males, 6 juveniles. Also included in the housing area, 6 beds in the receiving area, 2 beds for special housing such as medical, disciplinary etc., 4 beds for trusty inmates, 4 beds for work release inmates and 1 padded cell. The total number of beds equaled 62. Due to changes in the law juveniles are no longer detained at the justice center. All juveniles that are in need of being detained are placed in detention facilities throughout the state of Ohio.

INMATE POPULATION: When the new facility opened the inmate population averaged between 10 – 25 male inmates. At one time in the late 70’s, I can recall the population at 2 and both inmates were trustys. Needless to say those days are gone for good. With the new sentencing laws and repeat offenders, the average daily population has grown throughout the years to an average of 48 male inmates in jail each day. The female inmate population has grown from an average of 1 female prisoner (there have been times no females were in jail) to today’s average of 6 female inmates per day. Several times in the past five years the number of inmates sentenced to the Justice center exceeded the number of beds at the justice center. It was common on the weekend to have 15 inmates sleeping on cots that were set up in the recreation room. The highest number of inmates actually being housed at one time in the center was 78. This type of housing practice created several problems.

  1. There was only one correction officer working each shift.
  2. Several of the inmates had medical problems such as heart problems, diabetes, mental conditions etc.
  3. The kitchen was not large enough to accommodate a population this large.
  4. The number of blankets, mattresses and other supplies needed for housing inmates were not sufficient.
  5. The one washer and one dryer could not keep up with the laundry demand.

This practice of housing inmates beyond the means of the facility was aborted in 1994, which led to inmates being housed in other counties as the need arises. Several times so far this year inmates have been housed in other counties. At one time we had 15 female inmates sentenced to the Justice Center which led to seven of them being housed in other counties.

ALTERNATIVES: Two alternatives have been implemented to help ease the over-crowding at the Justice Center.

  • Some inmates are sentenced to serve their time on the weekend. This practice has two benefits. The inmate will be able to maintain his/her employment thus allowing him/her to support their dependents, pay their fines and court costs and their taxes. The second benefit is that a weekend sentence inmate may be excused from serving his/her sentence if there are no beds available for the inmate. The inmate still has to serve the sentence, she/he reports back to the Justice Center the following weekend to serve the sentence. The ability to excuse weekend sentence inmates saves the county thousand of dollars a year on housing costs. This however does cause some inconvenience on some of the inmates who schedules a vacation to do his/her sentence and is then turned away. An inmate being turned away a dozen times is not uncommon. The inmate receives a two-hour credit towards his sentence if he reports to the Justice Center and is turned away.

  • The other alternative is the house arrest program. The house arrest program is currently being operated within the Coshocton Municipal as well as the Juvenile Court system. Adult inmates, who meet the criteria of the sentencing court, serve a portion of their sentence in jail and the remaining time on the house arrest program. This practice has helped to reduce the number of inmates being housed in other counties.

STAFFING: As previously mentioned the population of the Justice Center was minimal during the early years. As the population grows so does the need for the staffing to maintain the Center. Presently the staffing of the Justice Center consists of a Jail Administrator, Correction Sergaent, and seven correction officers. Currently only one officer is assigned to midnight shift. The female communications officer on midnight shift also has the responsibility of maintaing the female population. Due to the increase in the female population another female correction officer will be added to the jail on midnight shift in the near future.

SATISTICS: The following are some statistics, which may be of some interest:

Miles traveled transporting inmates both adult and juvenile:

1996 – 18,629 1997 – 47,394 1998 – 44,607, 1999 - 52,147, 2000 - 55,926, 2001 - 46,193, 2002 - 50,802

Number of inmates booked into the Justice Center:

1996 – 1,919 1997 – 1,948 1998 – 1,713 1999 - 1,487 2000 - 1,415 2001 - 1,452 2002 - 1,236

Operating cost of the Justice Center:

1996 - $528,833 1997 - $607,838.24 1998-$664,425.82 1999 - $666,232.88 2000 - $761,874.93 2001 - $728,643.86 ............. 2002 - $839,008.88

Average daily population:

1996 – 46 1997 – 52.5 1998 – 47 1999 - 45.5 2000 - 50 2001 - 54.1 2002 - 64

The cost of housing a juvenile range from $85.00 - $110.00 per day.

The average cost for housing an adult inmate in another county is $60.00 per day.

The average cost to house an adult inmate at the Justice Center per day for 2000 $33.13, 2001-$32.20, 2002 - $35.91

Lt. James MacDonald

Jail Administrator last update December 20th, 2006

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