Tuesday, May 21 2013 12:03 AM EDT2013-05-21 04:03:02 GMT
Paramedics tell us they're amazed no one was seriously hurt in a rush hour crash just outside Albany Monday evening. The driver of a pickup truck lost control on Philema Road just before 5:00. The truckMore >>
The driver of a pickup truck and his passenger walk away from the mangled wreckage after a crash.More >>
Tuesday, May 21 2013 12:02 AM EDT2013-05-21 04:02:59 GMT
An unusual wreck on Albany's bypass Monday night left the highway littered with yard debris. About 9:30, a car collided with a trailer that was hauling tree limbs on the Liberty Expressway between theMore >>
Wrecked cars and yard debris slow traffic on Albany's bypass.More >>
Monday, May 20 2013 11:45 PM EDT2013-05-21 03:45:07 GMT
Moultrie Police tell us they have the accused triggerman in a shooting in custody after two weeks on the run. Police arrested 19-year-old Darren Huntley over the weekend in Waycross. 22-year-old DominiqueMore >>
Moultrie Police tell us they have the accused triggerman in a shooting in custody after two weeks on the run.More >>
Monday, May 20 2013 11:37 PM EDT2013-05-21 03:37:21 GMT
Students at a South Georgia University are working together to make it into the workforce. Nursing students at Georgia Southwestern asked business students to help them prepare for their job searches. HumanMore >>
Students at a South Georgia University are working together to make it into the workforce.More >>
Monday, May 20 2013 11:28 PM EDT2013-05-21 03:28:47 GMT
A lot of South Georgians are all too familiar with the damage a tornado can do. An EF-3 tornado roared through Americus six years ago. It killed two people and destroyed Sumter Regional Hospital andMore >>
A lot of South Georgians are all too familiar with the damage a tornado can do.More >>
THOMASVILLE, GA (WALB) - A new Georgia law that overhauled the criminal justice system will keep many non-violent offenders out of state prisons and provide them treatment instead.
Some sheriffs worry that could make a problem they're dealing with worse.
Many county jails are already overcrowded and costing more of your tax money to run at a time when counties are trying to cut spending.
Thomas County law enforcers say on an average week, they house around 200 jail inmates.
"We started seeing a spike. We've been as high as 280 in our jail. This week we're right around 260, which is still unusually high for us. 200 was a high number," said Captain Steve Jones.
Between an increase in arrests for not paying child support, to having more folks on probation, police say they have several theories.
"One is that judges are a little, we think could be little more reluctant to sending people into the state prison system because of the shortfalls they are having," said Jones.
Police say because the state prisons are overcrowded, some judges put them on probation instead.
And since many of the probationers do not have jobs, their fines are not being paid, sending them to jail.
"I think we are seeing some that are choosing not to pay the bondsman or to pail the bail and just to sit in jail until their court date," said Jones.
And like with every other aspect of society, the weak economy is having a impact.
"And unfortunately some people are resorting to crime to make ends meet. And we're seeing an increase in petty theft and we're seeing an increase in major theft," said Jones.
Police say inmate clothing, medical, and other costs have significantly increased.
"Then you have to figure in feeding three meals a day. You have to provide a bed. You have to provide a mat, blankets, pillows," said Jones.
Police say 30 new bunks have already been installed over the last 3 months, with another 50 to 100 expected by the end of the year.
Captain Jones says if this trend continues in Thomas County, they'll have to hire more jailers, costing more tax money.