Inmates report no air conditioning in portion of Muscogee County Jail

Inmates report no air conditioning in portion of Muscogee County Jail

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - Inmates are reporting that a portion of the Muscogee County Jail has no air conditioning.

From nearly 250 miles away in Savannah, Georgia, Pamela Lenhardt, the mother of an in the Muscogee County inmate, says she is beyond concerned.

Her son is one of the 251 inmates reportedly living in a portion of the jail without any working air conditioning.

"I have very big concerns because this is day three. He's been through other conditions at the jail, and while those were bad, this is totally different. I think it proposes significant health issues for all involved," said Lenhardt.

Jail officials reported a compressor issue was the reason for this problem, and repairs were completed in days.

Major Joe McCrae of the Muscogee County Sheriff's Office says the same compressor at fault in January is responsible for the lack of cool air in a portion of the facility.

However, McCrae says only a portion of the 4th floor in the 'common area/day rooms' are impacted. Inmates cells are run by a separate system and reportedly have air.

"We are aware of the issue. Facilities maintenance is working on it, but it will require a crane to install a new compressor. Hopefully, this will happen early in the week. We are monitoring the temperature in the dorms and have put up fans," said Sheriff Donna Tompkins in a response to Lenhardt.

Lenhardt says she speaks for all families with loved ones in the Muscogee County Jail who believe just because someone may be incarcerated, does not mean they should have to live in these conditions.

"If any one of us have issues with air conditioning, we could get relief for ourselves. But, for the inmates, it doesn't seem to be that kind of urgency," said Lenhardt.

Jail officials say they plan to have the problem corrected by the end of the week.

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