NORTH IDAHO – Five jails in North Idaho failed inspections by the Idaho Sheriff’s Association due to a lack of staff.
The group requires jails have at least two staff members on-duty at all times.
The Shoshone County Jail failed inspection because they did not have enough staff members on-duty. The Shoshone County Jail Commander said there are times when just one deputy is working by them self and is watching over an average of 30 inmates.
The jail’s insurance coverage could take a hit for not being certified by the Idaho Sheriff’s Association.
After KREM 2 News learned about the Shoshone County Jail’s inspection, 2 On Your Side looked into the situation at other North Idaho jails.
According to the Sheriff’s Association, the jails in Latah, Benewah, Boundary and Lewis Counties all failed their inspections this year due to staffing levels.
Jail officials with Latah County said they are actually up to proper staff levels and failed the inspection for not being fully compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act.
The Benewah County Jail Commander said that at times, he has just one guard on duty. On average, they have about 12 inmates in the jail, but sometimes have more than 20.
The jail also failed inspection for not having adequate space and no outdoor recreation area.
Officials said the Sheriff in Benewah County asks for a new jail every year but there is no money for it.
The Lewis County Sheriff said they do not have enough money to hire more staff.
Jail officials in Boundary County could not be reached for comment.