Frederick guards search jail

January 17, 1997


Staff Writer

FREDERICK, Md. - The Frederick County Adult Detention Center launched an aggressive 24-hour search of its facilities Thursday morning, prison officials said.

Lt. Robert L. Green, director of security for the prison, said the jail wants to take a "proactive" approach to safety and insisted that the lockdown has nothing to do with any prior incident.

"We're looking for anything and everything that shouldn't be there," he said.

Green said he could not comment on any items found until after the search ends, which should be about 8:30 a.m. today.


During the search, Green said the prisoners will be locked in their cells while about 45 staff members and five police K-9 dogs conduct an exhaustive sweep of the facility.

He said the search will target drugs and makeshift weapons. Sophisticated metal detectors will aid in the search, he added.

The detention center recently completed a construction project that added 44,000 square feet to the prison and increased the perimeter by 300 yards, Green said. With so much construction material flowing in and out of the prison, he said officials want to make certain that nothing was left behind that prisoners can fashion into a weapon.

"Things you and I take for granted, like a nail that someone drops, can be a very dangerous weapon in a prison facility," he said.

Of the 400 to 450 prisoners that are in the facility at any one time, about 70 are considered high security risks, Green said.

Green added that the prison holds people accused of the most serious crimes while they await trial. Nine inmates are currently awaiting murder trials, he said.

"We consider ourselves a maximum security facility," he said.

Green said the jail last conducted a comprehensive shakedown about 15 to 18 months ago. He said he could not recall anything of significance that found.

Green said the jail plans similar searches in the future as the detention center expands. A second construction phase, which will include an internal renovation and a new booking center, is scheduled to be completed in August.

A new work-release facility is planned for a third phase and a fourth will add another 224 beds, Green said.

The Herald-Mail Articles