Emergency meeting on Delaware County Prison

    County officials are angry at yet another early release by the private company that runs the prison.

    Delaware County elected officials are calling for an emergency meeting of criminal justice personal to address a continuing problem of mistaken releases from the county’s jail. On the same day that County Council announced reforms earlier this week, the privately-run prison let out yet another inmate who still had time to serve.

    The latest mistaken release brings the number to six known inmates let out prematurely by prison officials in the past several months.

    The George Hill facility in Thornton is run by the New Jersey based Community Education Centers Incorporated. In a written statement the company says it is implementing major changes to its release process.

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    Jack Whelan is the Chair of Delaware County Council. Whelan says his confidence in the company is shaken, and if the situation does not improve the county would consider terminating the contract.

    “Hopefully these new changes are being implemented, that employees are being retrained and these new safeguards will rectify the situation but god help them if it doesn’t.”

    Whelan says as of Thursday, the county ordered the prison operators to hold inmates up to 24 hours beyond their release date in order to check paperwork and confirm their status. Delaware county spends about $43 million a year to house prisoners.

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