Thursday, October 2, 2014
After a hastily convened meeting of the Hinds County Board of Supervisors this evening, officials took no action on a grand jury report that reportedly states that Sheriff Tyrone Lewis is incompetent to run the county's detention center.
The report recommends that the jail, which Lewis's office oversees and the county maintains, should be removed from the sheriff's control, calling him "incapable and unfit for this duty of his office," according to WAPT.
Members of the grand jury reported seeing prisoners with cellphones, which are contraband, and said they felt unsafe on visits to the Raymond facility.
The U.S. Department of Justice announced June 2 that the agency would open a "pattern or practice investigation" of both the Raymond Detention Center and the Jackson Detention Center downtown. A DOJ press release stated the investigation would focus "on whether Hinds County protects prisoners from harm at the hands of other prisoners and staff" and "improper use of force."
Lewis has come under scrutiny because of a number of incidents at the jail in recent years, including at least two uprisings and several instances of prisoners being killed while in the custody of the sheriff's office.
The five-member Hinds County Board of Supervisors went into executive session for more than 30 minutes, but announced no action when the board reconvened the meeting.
Update 10/3: A previous version of this story misstated that Hinds County Judge Tomie Green impanelled the grand jury that delivered a Oct. 2 report critical of Sheriff Tyrone Lewis. District Attorney Robert Smith called the grand jury.