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Inmates at Platte County Detention Center transferred due to overflow

Posted at 11:35 AM, Apr 12, 2022

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Inmates at the Platte County Detention Center have been transferred to other nearby jails in recent weeks due to population overflow, the Platte County Sheriff's Office announced Tuesday.

Platte County Sheriff Mark Owen said inmates are sleeping on floors in temporary beds due to overcrowding, and trying to sustain a high population could lead to "disciplinary problems."

"When the population in the detention center is between 220-230 inmates it pushes our staff and facility resources too far," Owen said. "We cannot safely keep this many inmates at a time in our jail."

The Platte County Jail has beds to hold 180 inmates, and was initially built to hold 154 inmates according to a release from the Platte County Sheriff's Office.

Platte County's population growth of around 25% since the jail first opened in 1998 is likely one factor for the inmate overflow, the sheriff's office says.

Inmates were first transferred March 10 to the Clay County Detention Center, after Owen, Platte County Prosecutor Eric Zahnd and County Commission Joe Vanover, among others, discussed the issue.

More inmates were relocated to Buchanan County Jail on April 2. There are currently 14 Platte County Jail inmates being held in other jails.

This marks the first time inmates in Platte County have been relocated to address population issues.

Owen says relocating inmates is only a short-term solution, and he anticipates the problem to worsen during the summer.