SC jail's crowding cuts options, risks violence

PICKENS, S.C. (AP) - The spread of methamphetamine and the resulting increase in arrests means that a South Carolina county jail is packed with twice the number of inmates than its Corrections Department-rated capacity.

The Greenville News reports ( ) that dramatic overcrowding at the Pickens County jail is leading to increased violence and limiting the ability of sheriff's deputies to do their job.

The facility is rated by the state Corrections Department to house 93 inmates. Jail administrator Capt. Keith Galloway says the population has averaged more than 200 for over a year.

Sheriff Rick Clark says the large majority of the jail's inmates are awaiting trial for anything from drug charges to violent crimes. He says the crowding limits the ability to plan operations that could result in many arrests.

Information from: The Greenville News,

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