Hinds Co. jail oversight committee cites consent decree violations

Hinds jail oversight committee cites consent decree violations
Marcell Anderson. Source: Hinds Co. SO
Marcell Anderson. Source: Hinds Co. SO
Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT

JACKSON, MS (WLBT) - A Hinds County Jail oversight committee said county justice officials are not following rules set by the Justice Department.

Members of the criminal justice coordinating committee presented their findings to the Hinds County board of supervisors on Monday.

They told them that there are 357 inmates who have been in jail for over 90 days without indictments.

They also said that there are 200 inmates that have been locked up for over a year without a trial.

"This is a violation of the consent decree, not only that, but it's a violation of individual constitutional rights," said Kenneth Lewis, a quality control officer and committee member.

County prosecutors said continuances and other factors can cause those delays, but they're not under their control.

According to the District Attorney's office, their numbers on un-indicted inmates are in the single digits.

"If a judge sets a trial, we're there, that's something that happens in any jurisdiction in the land if our case is not ready we have a backlog in the crime lab," said Hinds County District Attorney Robert Schuler-Smith. "We have a backlog in some autopsies and they know this."

Two detention officers were also arrested Monday for trying to bring contraband into the Hinds County Jail.

Sheriff Victor Mason said Marcell Anderson and Shauntavia Lee were taken into custody as they reported for duty Sunday.

Anderson was in possession of mairjuana, spice, meth and Xanax pills.

The sheriff said Lee had controlled substances in her car, and is charged with giving a cell phone to an inmate.

Both Anderson and Lee were hired by the department last year.

Sheriff Mason said he caught the two off of a tip.

Copyright 2018 WLBT. All rights reserved.