Control room operator Lura Treiber and Cpl. Vanessa Toner, at right, work in the control room at the Kittitas County jail, Tuesday, Nov. 4, 2014. (Brian Myrick/Daily Record)
Everyone booked into the Kittitas County Corrections Center starts at the same place.
Officers at a wide counter in a bunker-like room take vital information, get fingerprints and shoot new arrivals’ photos in front a gray Formica slab glued to a wall, which hangs almost kitty-corner to a big notice that reads “Welcome to Kittitas County” on the opposite wall.
For residents, the day starts at 4:45 a.m., corrections Cpl. Vanessa Toner said. Inmates get medication and meals around then, and have to be ready for a 6 a.m. daily inspection.
The resident population hangs between 90 to 110 inmates, split between those awaiting trial and those sentenced, usually for misdemeanors, who have sentences less than a year.
Sentences longer than ayear are carried out in prisons.
The larger cluster of cells — the newer, two-story jail “pod” — surrounds a large common area, where the inmates get 2 1/2 hours to spend outside of their cell.
The larger annex has a nook for getting outside, larger program rooms for 12-step program meetings and religious services, tables, a couple of phones and televisions. They get basic cable.
Other housing units share small common areas between two cells, with similar amenities.
Inmates are sorted based on their crimes, whether they are accused or sentenced, and criminal history, with the more violent or potentially dangerous offenders in the two-cell units.
Inmates can speak with visitors using video phone connected to a room outside the jail’s secure area. Toner said the jail recently added a system where people can see and talk to inmates from home using the Internet.
There’s no visiting beyond that, save attorneys, who Toner said come by during all hours of the day and night.
Read more here.