New Cincinnati Sheriff Halts Early Jail Releases Of Suspects Sought on Warrants


In a major change from his predecessor, Hamilton County, Ohio Sheriff Jim Neil in Cincinnati no longer releases inmates early – at least, not before the inmate sees a judge, says the Cincinnati Enquirer. “As a sheriff, it's embarrassing when an inmate is back on the street before the officer who arrested him,” Neil said. One released inmate who was arrested Tuesday had 29 outstanding arrest warrants connected to failing to appear in court from previous arrests dating back three years. Neil's new policy is aimed at ensuring that people who have thumbed their noses at the system since former Sheriff Simon Leis Jr. began releasing inmates early to avoid overcrowding at the jail now have to deal with those warrants. “They're scamming the system,” Municipal Court Judge Lisa Allen said of the scores who have warrants issued for them – many with eight or more for failure to appear in court – because they knew there was no room at the jail to hold them. From 2009 until Leis retired at the end of 2012, more than 10,000 inmates were released early or had sentences deferred because Leis said there was no room for them at the jail.

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