Detention Center earns stars in community partners program

Since its construction in 1992, the Clark County Detention Center has served the community in its current location on Wall Street.

The jail houses more than 230 inmates and employs nearly 40 people.

“Our job consists of the care, custody and control of the inmates,” Jailer Frank Doyle said.

Since Doyle’s election in 2015, he said that he and Chief Deputy Justin Crockett have made several improvements to the facility and its operation, including adding more beds to increase the total number of inmates the center can hold.

The jail has also expanded its services in that time. New medical services offered on site mean that most health issues can be addressed in the building rather, rather than having to transport the inmates to Clark Regional Medical Center.

Additionally, jail staff have begun educational and rehabilitation programs to help inmates further their education, learn practical skills and deal with drug addiction. So far, four inmates at the detention center have earned their GED.

“We want them to be better people when they leave than they were when they got here,” Crockett said. “If we can do that for one person, we’ve done our job.”

In addition to watching over the inmates within the jail, CCDC employees are also in charge of transporting them when they need to leave the jail. The guards transfer the inmates to bailiffs at the courthouse when it is time for their day in court, and several inmates work on crews for other public agencies, like the county road department and parks and recreation.

These programs help the jail save and even make money, enabling it to earn between $1.8 and $2 million each year.

To be successful, Crockett said the jail has to handle a lot of variables every day, including personality conflicts between inmates and staff.

“It takes respect,” he said. “Respect for the other staff members, and respect for the inmates. Once you lose that, you don’t get it back.”

CCDC took part in the Winchester-Clark County Chamber of Commerce’s 2017 Community Partners program, which establishes a rating system (one to three stars) to recognize local organizations, businesses and industries that go above and beyond in their investment, promotion and contributions to the community.

Businesses and organizations may apply annually for the program, and must meet several requirements. They must be a member of the chamber of commerce in good standing, display a clean, organized and well-maintained facility, offer health and wellness programs to employees, establish recycling programs to reduce their environmental footprint, have employees who volunteer at local community nonprofit organizations and/or mentoring programs, they must participate in community events, meet a certain percentage of employees who live in Clark County, participate in local training and professional development opportunities and actively seek employees who have the National Career Readiness Certificate (NCRC) as well as veterans.

CCDC received two stars from the program.