Jail Escapes Raising Questions

3-13-06 – The jail trust authority who make decisions on how to fund the jail, hopes that their work over the next six weeks will provide some concrete ideas on what needs to be done, which could boil down to looking to neighboring counties.

Part of the fear in Bryan County is that if the jail trust does not make a change soon, the state will take funds from the county budget in order to bring the jail up to par from county projects such as road construction.

Another inmate escaped from the Bryan County Jail Sunday morning. That brings the number of escapes at the main jail and auxiliary jail to eight in one year. Authorities say 32-year-old Jerrell Farrell escaped from the auxiliary jail between six and six thirty Sunday morning. However, authorities did not know he was gone until around eight in the morning when they received a call from Farrell’s mother reporting that her son escaped.

Farrell was taken back to jail. The assistant administrator says the jail is looking into how Farrell was able to escape. Only two jailers were on duty overnight and log books show the last hourly headcount was performed at 5:50 a.m. The morning shift did not perform a headcount and the assistant jail administrator says the mistake may have contributed to Farrell’s escape.

Last month, the high profile escape of accused murderer Kevin Leon Cross led to an OSBI investigation. The state has been asked to investigate the latest escape and interview jailers.

The Bryan County Jail Trust Authoriy will hold their next meeting on Monday, March 20th at 10:00 a.m. in the courthouse. They hope at the meeting they can begin outlining the plan to fix the jail.