WOOD COUNTY, OH (WTOL) - After a recent expansion to the Wood County Jail that added space for 75 beds, the Wood County Sheriff is now aiming for even more expansion.
The proposed expansion is needed because of the heroin and opiate epidemic that is spreading through Ohio, including Wood County.
The Wood County Sheriff says the jail will need a bigger booking area and a new medical facility.
"Our jails have become mental health hospitals," said Wood County Sheriff Mark Wasylyshyn. "Our jails in our country have become detox facilities, and our jail was not designed for that. We don't have enough beds designed for properly dealing with people with mental health issues and detoxing."
The current booking area has only five holding cells used to house inmates that need to detox after they are arrested.
"If all five of the holding cells are full and we arrest someone that is combative, we don't have a safe place to put them and deal with them until they calm down," Sheriff Wasylyshyn said.
The Sheriff first brought the issue up in 2011, but those talks went almost nowhere.
However, the sheriff's office presented the idea again to the Wood County Commissioners, and this time it is getting more traction.