Feds to Require Jail Expansion for Ark. Juveniles

Feds to Require Jail Expansion for Ark. Juveniles

A federal mandate may force an Arkansas county to build a new jail to house juveniles.
MARION, AR (abc24.com) - A federal mandate may force an Arkansas county to build a new jail to house juveniles.

Under the Prison Rape Elimination Act, if a juvenile is charged or convicted as an adult, they must be separated from the adult inmates.

Crittenden County Sheriff Mike Allen says the jail is going to need to make major changes to comply with the law.

"It presents a problem but it's something that we're working on right now with other agencies, trying to maybe pool together our resources and maybe be able to house them and pay to house them in other areas or counties," he said.

The law applies to all local jails, lockups, juvenile facilities, and community confinement facilities. It goes into effect in august.

Each jail will be audited for compliance. The facilities that are not up to code could face financial penalties.

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