Martin County Looking to Get a New Jail

Martin County Looking to Get a New Jail

By Sylvia Gonzalez
NewsWest 9

MARTIN COUNTY - There could be some changes coming soon to the Martin County Jail. The facility is almost 40 years old and with tougher jail standards, the jail might have to end up closing their doors if a new one is not built soon.

According to Sgt. Ashley Borgstedte, the reason why this idea was even started was for security measures, it's really easy for an inmate to get out.

"We have a real big security issue with our rec yard being down the block instead of being hooked to the facility. So we have to take them outside the secure facility and walk them around and into the rec yard. We actually had an escape from the rec yard, we caught him but we had an escape. That's just one of those risk that we take," Borgstedte said.

The Martin County Jail opened their doors back in 1975, two years before the current jail standards were established. Sgt. Borgstedte says that although they are within state standards, it's getting tougher to keep the jail open.

"They are starting to impose stricter and stricter standards, it's been harder and harder for us to keep that jail open, keep it safe and keep it secure," Borgstedte said.

The current jail has eight inmates, no females are housed there but a new jail would change that. Borgstedte says the new facility could consist of 48 beds and an attached recreation area. He says although they desperately need a new jail, there could be some obstacles down the road.

"Finances is number one. Figuring out how to pay for it, that's the biggest obstacle that we have at the moment. Location, we are trying to find a good location for it," Borgstedte said.

With a new jail on the horizon, new personnel will be also be needed.

"We would probably add four more jailors. What we are gonna have to end up doing is to have one that's dedicated to control of the facility and one that's dedicated to working with the inmates ensuring they are taken care of."

Borgestedte tells NewsWest 9, he would also like to see the latest security system in the new jail.

"I want the brand new stuff. I want high quality night vision cameras, pan and zoom cameras and digital recording. I want cameras everywhere, that's the best security you can have in a jail," Borgstedte said.

Borgstedte hopes they can break ground for the new jail early next year.