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Safety a concern at county’s probation office

June 9, 2013
by Lacey Sawatzky - Register Staff Writer (lsawatzky@faribaultcountyregister.com) , Faribault County Register

Some officials in the historical Faribault County Courthouse feel some office updates are needed, for more modern safety issues.

Allen Hanson and Katie Campbell of Faribault County Probation Offices, attended the Faribault County Commissioners meeting on Tuesday to discuss their thoughts on making the probation office more secure.

The main idea is to add double doors with a check-in window, so the county employees wouldn't have direct contact with the criminals.

"Then, if they needed a meeting room they could be escorted back, through the second doors," Campbell explains.

Judge Douglas Richards agreed that the staff in the probation office are in need of additional safety features.

"They are in there after work hours, meeting with people with criminal behavior," he says. "I'd hate to see them here alone without some type of security."

Hanson adds that much of the criminal behavior they deal with can be very random.

"It's random when things could happen, and there is randomness within a criminal mind,"?he says. "These days, a criminal can be a drug addict, thief, fighter and some times a killer the criminal mind is an arena."

Hanson wondered if there was any way the commissioners would be able to work with the state to get the ball rolling on some of these improvements.

Sheriff Mike Gormley told the commissioners that there was, at one point, a security audit done on the upper level of the courthouse.

"We need to take a look at the whole picture," he says.

Commissioner Tom Warmka suggested they make a comprehensive plan on how the county can improve that and other areas of the courthouse.

"These days violence is more common than it is rare,"?he says.

Commissioner Tom Loveall agrees that the board members should take a look at the office and go from there.

"Then, let's start running some numbers and see if we have to work this into the budget when the time comes," he says.

Hanson and Campbell also expressed to the board their interest in visiting different youth correctional facilities.

"We recommend which facility to send the youth to. So, we would like to go see what each one is like,"?Hanson says.

Judge Richards explained to the commissioners that Hanson and Campbell are the ones making recommendations and it's important that they are knowledgeable on what each facility offers.

The commissioners gave approval for the travel to some of the various facilities utilized by Faribault County.

 
 

 

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