Grayson County mulls options as state halts inmate intake - - No One Gets You Closer

Grayson County mulls options as state halts inmate intake

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SHERMAN, Texas -- Every week, Grayson County sends eight to 10 inmates to state prison facilities.

But that is no longer an option.

The Texas Department of Criminal Justice is closing its doors to any additional inmates due to the 6,000 prisoners who had to be evacuated from five southeast Texas units in the wake of Hurricane Harvey.

That means any Grayson County inmates who had been ordered to serve time in a state jail or prison facility will remain in Sherman until the state units reopen for transfers.

The county's detention center was holding 410 inmates as of Wednesday morning; the facility has a capacity of 430.

"If we run to the point that we cant keep any more people, one of the options is to move our inmates to other jails," Grayson County Sheriff Tom Watt said.

And if that becomes necessary, it will cost the county $50 per inmate per day.

"The key concern that I have is for the taxpayers of Grayson County," County Judge Bill Magers said. "I want to make sure that whatever solution that we come up with is financially sound, and at the same time keeping them safe."

Magers said he has full confidence in Sheriff Watt, county judges and the district attorney.

"We'll all work together and make sure we do the best we can under the circumstances," Magers added.

County officials consider prisoner transfers to other jails to be a last resort.

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