Officials seek to slow growth in county jail inmate population

2013-03-21T22:30:00Z 2013-03-21T23:21:04Z Officials seek to slow growth in county jail inmate populationThe Associated Press The Associated Press
March 21, 2013 10:30 pm  • 

CHICAGO | Cook County commissioners are suggesting all prostitution arrests in the county be treated as misdemeanors as part of an effort to slow the growth of the jail population.

A resolution passed during Wednesday's board meeting urges the Illinois Legislature to eliminate the felony prostitution charge.

Spokeswoman Sally Daly says State's Attorney Anita Alvarez hadn't reviewed the moratorium proposal and declined to comment on it.

According to Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle, the jail's population jumped to 10,008 detainees on Monday. She says that is the jail's highest number since March 2005. The jail's capacity is about 10,150.

Preckwinkle attributes the population increase to county law enforcement putting too much focus on nonviolent felonies. Authorities also attribute growth to increased arrests and the long wait in bringing cases to trial.

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