Local
4:00 pm
Thu September 12, 2013

Fulton County Jail Begins Installing Multi-Million Dollar Lock System

Fulton County jailers today moved the first group of inmates into cells with a new, improved lock system, a step toward getting the jail out from under federal oversight.

An audio version of this story as broadcast on WABE

Some thirty of the most troublesome inmates found themselves in more secure surroundings today: cells equipped with electronic locks.

Col. Mark Adger, the chief jailer, says will make his staff and inmates "100% safer."

In the first half of this year, there were 46 incidents related to inmates getting out of their cells because of the antiquated lock system which dates back to the jail's opening in 1989. According to Col. Adger "inmates are always popping out of their cells for various reasons mostly to assault other inmates and steal property from other inmates."

The jail has been under federal oversight since 2006 following a lawsuit over dangerous and overcrowded conditions. Col. Adger says the $4.6 million spent on the new lock system will help answer part of that problem. "It's a huge hurdle that we've overcome," said Adger, "and when all the locks have been replaced,
think we'll be able to check that off our list."

The jail hopes to have the new lock system installed on all 1370 cells by February 2014.