The State Penitentiary isn’t the only facility releasing inmates.
Sheriff Kelly Leben is working with the courts to release some low-level offenders, and inmates who have served the majority of their term, at the Burleigh-Morton Detention Center.
He says this is something that’s never been done before in Burleigh County. But, he says it’s become necessary to protect corrections officers, and hopefully, prevent an outbreak.
The Sheriff’s Department came up with a list of those that could qualify for release.
Right now, the Detention Center has about 300 inmates, and Sheriff Leben says the goal is to get the jail population down to around 200.
“So some of these people, there’s no question, they deserve to be in jail. But when we’re going through this crisis, I don’t know, both from a public health standpoint and a public safety standpoint, if now’s the time for them to be locked up,” Sheriff Leben added.
The first list of inmates to release has been selected, but it’s unclear exactly when that will happen.