Sheriff: Hamilton County Justice Center goes from worst jail in Ohio to best

Published: Jul. 14, 2016 at 6:01 PM EDT|Updated: Jul. 14, 2016 at 8:10 PM EDT
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HAMILTON COUNTY, OH (FOX19) - The Hamilton County Justice Center has gone from one of the worst rated jails in Ohio to the best in the last three years, Hamilton County Sheriff Jim Neil reported Thursday.

Neil reported that when he became sheriff, a State Jail Inspector with the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation & Corrections conducted an annual audit of the jail.  The 2013 report released found the Justice Center failed 48 out of the 69 standards.

The Inspector referred to the Justice Center as the worst jail in the entire state, Sheriff Neil said.

The latest Annual State Jail Inspection stated that the Justice Center "is now compliant with 100 percent of the essential standards."

"As Sheriff I'm extremely proud of the hard work and dedication of the men and women working at the Justice Center who made this monumental improvement possible," Neil said, at a press conference Thursday. "To go from worst to first in a relatively short period of time shows their commitment to excellence and I commend them."

Neil said the list of standards reviewed has increased from 69 in 2013 to 115 in 2016, despite being understaffed.

"We've come a long way on my watch, but our work is never done," Neil said. "We continue to look at ways we can improve all aspects of our operation, including the jail, the courts and our patrols."

He and Major Charmaine McGuffey have continued to push for a detox and treatment floor at the Justice Center to help with the heroin epidemic, something the Commissioners are considering, according to a press release.

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