Criminal Justice

Sheriff: Jail will have more inmates in 2012

By Matt Davis, The Lens staff writer |

Orleans Parish Sheriff Marlin Gusman expects to increase the number of inmates in his jail from 3,100 to 3,400 next year, he said during a public hearing Friday.

Gusman confirmed the expected increase even as an advisory group assembled by Mayor Mitch Landrieu is working to set the final size of Gusman’s new jail, and relations between the two offices have become more strained as the group delays a final decision on the jail’s capacity.

Sheriff Marlin Gusman makes brief remarks before approving a budget for the Orleans Parish Law Enforcement District. Photo by Matt Davis

The mayor formed the group in September 2010 and asked them to make a final recommendation by Nov. 22 of that year, but the group still hasn’t reached a conclusion on the jail size and the next meeting has not been scheduled.

Gusman said his office is working on a barely adequate budget, a day after an investigation by The Lens showed his office spending public money on liquor, cheerleaders and Carnival beads.

Gusman made his remarks during a four-and-a-half-minute meeting of the Orleans Parish Law Enforcement District, shortly before approving its budget for the year.

“I guess the only comment I’ll make is that we are operating on a very tight, tight margin here,” Gusman said. “Very little, this is not the way we want to operate. A very tight margin. We don’t have sufficient cash reserves for unexpected problems that may come up.”

By law, the district released documents before the budget hearing, but it was unclear whether documents given to The Lens were even the right budget, and Gusman’s office did not respond to questions on the document.

The budget shows an expected increase in inmates from 3,100 in 2011 to 3,400 in 2012 — with extra revenue expected to come from the opening of a 500-bed temporary jail.

“A lot of those are going to be the re-entry inmates,” Gusman said, without elaborating further.

Gusman once said that the temporary beds would not increase the overall jail population but later reneged.

A representative from Councilwoman Susan Guidry’s asked Gusman to confirm whether 3,400 beds was the expected total number of inmates, including state and federal inmates, and Gusman said it was.

Help us report this story     Report an error    
The Lens' donors and partners may be mentioned or have a stake in the stories we cover.
  • Deputy Sheriff 3

    More inmates means more money that Gusman, Ursin, Barre, and Howard can skim of the top like they skim the detail money. Of Course Barre and Howard are experts on skimming money. Just look at the Sheriffs Detail fund and the NOPD traffic division that Howard is still under investigation for.

    Being a crook and thief normally keeps you from becoming a cop but in Gusmans sheriffs office its a requirement to be rank.

  • JailGusman

    Wow how much does this terrorist Gusman need to do before someone locks him up? Seriously, this is out of control.

    OPP is an unconstitutional hell hole. Gusman is a despicable disgrace of a human being. He must have no shame.

  • JFW

    Let’s all thwart Gusman’s evil plan to increase the number of inmates in OPP. From here on, let’s all agree to not commit any crimes and deprive Gusman of potential inmates! That’ll show him!

  • Bro Keith “X” Hudson

    It’s not Gusman thats the problem here. And I don’t understand why people are playing this sick game. Landrieu is the PROBLEM! Him and this dysfunctional jail task force he created who can’t get anything correct. Gusman is a “career-politricker” just like Landrieu, and ALL of them stick to together, no matter what! Gusman will get a bigger jail, regardless, because who’s gonna deny that the city is
    out of control with the “alleged” crime problem, and that’s his ace-in-the-hole that Landrieu will not disagree with. Politricks as ususal!!!

  • JailGusman

    to JFW:
    New crimes will be created. Laws will be more strictly enforced on the laws that exist now (think this is a good thing? Imagine the stupidity of more jaywalking tickets, more tickets for being in a park after dark, more arrests for urinating in public, smoking a joint, not paying a speeding ticket from those fucking traffic cameras, violating teen curfew, drunk in public, etc…) which will of course be enforced against minorities, youth, and the poor almost exclusively.

    They will find a way to fill the beds. The way the laws can be interpreted, you can be committing a crime at any time. Plenty of people have filled Gusman’s pockets by being in OPP for “blocking the sidewalk” etc… (but only the kind of people that no one will be outraged to learn is in jail for such stupid bullshit, i.e. people without power, political connections, or white skin and a good GPA or a private school pedigree).

    Grow up.

  • Geez

    Gusman is going down. This corruption is just the tip of the iceberg…the cover ups are what is going to bring him down. He lies…big, fat, serious lies. He is a really, really bad man.

  • Ray

    The sheriff’s office is out of money and they want to INCREASE the number of prisoners? Does anyone see this obvious problem?