The Moniteau County Sheriff's Department began operating the new Moniteau County Jail facility mid-March, transferring the inmates in a few at a time, until the new jail was fully operational.
Each inmate goes through a booking process then is assigned to a pod and cell. The booking station has "live scan printing" technology for fingerprints. No ink is used with this kind of printing. A breath testing device will soon be installed in the booking area.
The officer at the booking area also takes booking photos, sometimes called "mug shots." The up-to-date facility is capable of housing up to 42 inmates in three pods. Each pod can house 12 to 16 inmates. The main pod is for the general population. One of the others is for females and the third is currently designated for other inmates, such as temporary weekend holds.
All inmates are observable from the control room. The increased jail capacity is expected to eventually be a financial advantage to the county since housing inmates elsewhere sends county dollars to the other institutions. In addition, the design and location of the jail near the courthouse will eliminate as much transportation of prisoners as possible.
Each pod contains several cells, some on the main level and others on an upper level. Depending on the cell, there is space for two to six inmates. Each pod also contains a common area with tables and seats.
Inmate visitations will be held via new technology of a video visitation station in each pod. The station is connected with one of the three stations in the video visitation room. With the new technology, inmate visitations will be held without the visitor ever being in the same part of the building as the inmate.
The holding cells are off the booking area. The facility is finished off with an outside exercise area, kitchen and laundry room. The new jail is designed to meet certain ADA standards for handicap accessibility.
The electronic design of the facility is intended to allow a single jailer to maintain control and security. It is designed to provide adequate security, allow reasonable access, efficiency of operation and ease of maintenance. The pod design is to allow maximum flexibility and a room is available for initial arraignment and hearings and meetings with probation and parole personnel.
Some remodeling has been done at the old jail as department office space for Sheriff Jeptha Gump, officers and staff.
The Moniteau County Sheriff's Department is responsible for patrol and law enforcement in about 515 square miles. The responsibility includes the entire county, except for the City of California and the City of Tipton, each of which has its own police force. The department is staffed by full-time and part-time employees. Assisting Sheriff Jeptha "J" Gump in law enforcement duties are full-time employees Chief Deputy Kevin Morse, Corporal Wayne Cleveland, Tyler Homan and Edward Wiecken.
Morse is in charge of the patrol officers and is second in command. Cleveland, Homan and Wiecken are full-time patrol officers.
Other full-time employees include: Latisha Howard, office manager and secretary; jailers Steve Brougham, Lorri Strickfaden, Terry Robb, Jeff Cook, Michelle Taylor and Kimberly Martin.
There are a number of part-time road deputies and jailers.
To carry out the duties of the Sheriff's Office, the department has several patrol cars, pickups and a Dodge Durango.
The pickups allow easier access to some of the gravel roads in the county. The Durango is used for transporting jail inmates when needed.
According to information provided by Presiding County Commissioner Kenny Kunze, Nicholas H. Gray was Moniteau County Sheriff/Collector when the county was organized in 1845.