BENTONVILLE (KFSM) -- After 14 months of planning, designing, and campaigning, the Benton County Sheriff’s Office finally broke ground on its newest pod this week.
Deputy Keshia Guyll said the expansion should help the county solve its overcrowding problems, at least in part.
“We have so many inmates that we are holding for state facilities and felony commits, that there is not a lot of room for our misdemeanor charges,” Guyll said.
With a capacity of roughly 650 inmates, the current jail has no extra beds available for new offenders.
“[Offenders] were either being let off, or [sentences were] postponed,” Guyll said.
With the addition of a new $1.9 million pod, the Sheriff’s Office will add 40 new misdemeanor beds, and 12 lockdown pods for female inmates. Guyll said the current jail does not have designated lockdown pods for female inmates.
Guyll said the jail expansion will also feature training and break rooms for employees. There will also be additional rooms for ministry outreach for inmates.