05/22/2012 09:26 am ET

State Plans To Reopen Detroit Prison After Closing It In January

By Jeff Gerritt

With Michigan’s prison population rising by more than 1,000 so far this year, the Department of Corrections plans to reopen Mound Correctional Facility in Detroit — just four months after the state closed the east-side prison. The new lockup will serve special populations, including parolees with minor parole violations who will stay for 90 days or less, and possibly prisoners nearing their release date who need re-entry programs.

The state has been sending more parolees back to prison — more than it has space to hold — for so-called technical violations, including failing to report to their parole officers, drinking alcohol, not showing up at a job, failure to report a change of address, and absconding. The residential re-entry programs now serving parole violators are outstate, including in Lake County and Tuscola Counties Tuscolosa — far from the homes and families of most parolees. Corrections is looking for more short-term beds in the Detroit area for parole violators.

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