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Vernon Parish breaks ground on new jail

Last Modified: Tuesday, September 17, 2013 9:20 AM

By Lauren Manary / American Press

Local officials gathered at an open field in Leesville on Monday to celebrate the groundbreaking of a new jail that will be able to better manage the number of inmates the sheriff’s office can house.

The new $7.2 million Vernon Parish Sheriff’s Office and Jail will be built at the corner of 3rd and Wingate streets and will have a maximum inmate capacity of 147. The new jail, which is located down the street from the existing one, will be a vast increase in size from the current facility, which houses 84. The existing facility is in the center of the city at 202 South 3rd St.

“Our current capacity in our jail is 84 and we are almost always full,” said Vernon Parish Sheriff Sam Craft. “The new will greatly increase our capacity for inmates.”

The new sheriff’s office and jail will have state-of-the-art features in the detention area and will have disabled accessibility. Construction is scheduled to be completed by March 2015.

The jail was approved by voters in 2010, when they approved $7.5 million in general obligation bonds.

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