Sheriff declares Macomb Co. Jail overcrowding emergency

(WXYZ) - The number of inmates in Macomb County Jail has exceeded capacity, and it's why Sheriff Anthony Wickersham has declared a jail emergency.

"I need to come up with a solution." said Wickersham, "We need to work together as a county to come up with a solution."

Sheriff Wickersham says declaring the jail emergency could lead to an early release for about two dozen prisoners.

"We need to reach out in bringing in all the county stakeholders, the Executive, the commissioners, the prosecutors, the law enforcement leaders in Macomb County, the finance department, the judges." said Wickersham, "Everybody has to come together. Here we're identifying a problem that we have."

Because the jail has exceeded the building's capacity for inmates at 1,238 for seven straight days, by law, Wickersham must find a way to lower that number. The emergency declaration gives Macomb County 15 days to reduce the jail count to 1,213.

"Do we expand here, do we build a new facility?" asked Wickersham, "And of course, everybody will go crazy as soon as you say expansion. But you have to look at the options. You have to look out into the future."

The last time Macomb County declared a jail emergency was back in 2008 when 68 inmates were released early.

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