Los Angeles County wrestles with consequences of prison realignment
California prisons have been rapidly shedding inmates in an attempt to reduce overcrowding and comply with court orders. Through a process called realignment, low-risk offenders are being sent to county jails instead of state prisons.
That's caused a spike in the number of inmates at Los Angeles County jails, report Andrew Blankstein and Jason Song in Tuesday's Los Angeles Times.
The county is now worried about overcrowding of its own, and officials are in talks with Central Valley cities in hopes of using empty jail space there to house as many as 1,000 inmates.
"Those moves are likely to be the first in a series of efforts to deal with the increased jail population brought on by realignment," write Blankstein and Song. "The shift has increased the jail populations in counties across the state, with some counties resorting to early release to avoid overcrowding."
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Photo: Inmates and officers at a jail run by the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department. Credit: Reed Saxon / Associated Press