Russian TV crew visits Ben Hill County jail - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Russian TV crew visits Ben Hill County jail

By  Stephanie Springer  - bio | email

FITZGERALD, GA (WALB) –The Pink Jail in Ben Hill County has international appeal. It caught the eye of a Russian Television Network who found the story interesting.

Tuesday, a Russian television reporter based out of Washington and his photographer spent hours at the jail.

The Ben Hill County Jail is attracting a lot of attention, and most recently, it caught the eye of Andrey Cherkasov, A reporter for Channel One Russia. Cherakasov is a a  U.S. correspondent based in Washington D.C. "We are the biggest major Russian network in Russia and worldwide for a Russian speaking audience," said Cherakasov.

Cherkasov says he stumbled on the news on the radio and paid a visit to WALB's website and watched the clip. "I figured well that's something new, from the picture point of things, it is something strange something bizarre," he said.

So Andrey and his photographer made plans to fly all the way from Washington DC, to Atlanta and make the drive to Ben Hill County." I thought maybe it would be a few cells, but not the whole facility, not the corridors the uniforms or towels," said Cherkasov.

Today, they spent hours at the jail getting video and interviewing Sheriff Bobby McLemore. "He spoke English and we actually communicated quite well but when he did the actual interview for the TV station he spoke Russian," said McLemore.

According to the sheriff there are more than 150 jails alone in the state of Georgia but for this Channel One reporter., the Ben Hill county jail was his first American jail experience.

He thinks it will also make also an impression on law enforcement officers overseas."It might set an example for our law enforcement authorities in Russia, maybe they wouldn't agree with the color but maybe they would try a different color," said Cherkasov.

The crew will spend the rest of the week in Georgia before returning to Washington.

The reporter tells us he mostly focuses on political pieces in Washington but every now and then, they get to do feature stories.

The crew is headed to Augusta to do a piece on a 100-year old OB-GYN who still helps deliver babies.

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