GREENE COUNTY, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV) – It’s a problem that several counties across the Wabash Valley are facing: overcrowding jail populations. But Greene County’s problem will soon be a thing of the past.
I feel like people realize that we needed a place to put the people, we were out of space.”
– Sheriff Michael Hasler
The finishing touches of a jail expansion are taking place at the Greene County Jail.
“We’ve not got the video phones on the walls or the regular phones on the walls or the seats on the tables and the tables are mounted,” Hassler said.
A much-needed new addition was built rather quickly and it was done with open minds.
“There was hardly any push back and the county government has all worked well together and this just fell into place,” Hassler said.
Greene County Sheriff Michael Hasler gave us a tour of the jail
After years of overcrowding officials’ broke ground on the site back in 2018.
The new portion adds 202 additional beds that when complete will connect to the current 84 bed jail.
The more than $15 million project also renovated some parts of the old jail, and with the new improvements the facility is expected to last the county for the next 20 years, something county officials all agree is a smart move for the future.
“Until you walk through these doors and look at this building you think you know but you really don’t know the nuts and bolts of the business,” Greene County Chief Deputy George Dallaire said. “They all said, ‘well I didn’t know we had to do that.’ You know, it opened their eyes to what our job is, what our needs are, they could see the short comings they could see the overcrowding.”
The pod design makes it easy to watch inmates from above especially with the help of more than 100 cameras and state of the art technology.
This is the best jail around right now.”
– Chief Deputy George Dallaire
With so many surrounding counties, overcrowded inmates could soon find an open cell in Greene County.
“My allegiance is really to the other sheriffs, and all the sheriffs are over capacity basically and I’m going to be one of the first ones in our area to free up some space,” Hassler said. “More than likely, I will help my surrounding sheriffs.”
If you would like to see the new jail for yourself Greene County will have an open house from 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday, May 23.
The county expects to move inmates into the new facility the first week of June.