Creek County Jail supervisors comply with state order to reduce inmate population

Saturday, November 3rd 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

SAPULPA, Okla. (AP) _ The State Fire Marshal's Office has confirmed that Creek County Jail supervisors have met a state-imposed ultimatum for reducing the inmate population at its overcrowded facility.

The jail had until Friday to reduce the number of prisoners from 146 to a maximum of 121.

``We're in good shape,'' said Creek County Sheriff Steve Toliver. ``We should have plenty of room for the weekend.''

Toliver's office sent a letter to the Fire Marshal's Office and the state Health Department, telling them it had met its deadline.

Agent Terry Smith of the Fire Marshal's Office visited the lockup on Friday and verified that the jail held 105 inmates, said spokesman Ed Chappell of the Fire Marshal's Office.

Toliver said 15 inmates who had been sentenced and were awaiting transport were sent to the Department of Corrections and others were released on recognizance bonds. No violent offenders were set free, he said.

Complaints about the jail led to an inspection Monday by the Health Department, said Don Garrison, director of the agency's Jail Inspection Division. Three months ago, the lockup was cited for 10 violations.

Creek County's facility is one of a number of Oklahoma jails in financial or legal trouble because of disrepair or inadequate housing.

Jails in Comanche, Garfield and Johnston counties also are in danger of being closed because of Health Department and other violations.

Creek County voters will go to the polls on Nov. 13 to decide whether to approve a countywide 1 cent sales tax.

A third of the tax would go toward the construction of a new $10 million jail.