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Santa Clara County: Federal report spreads blame for jail problems

Instead, the two peace officers who wrote the report for the institute, which is overseen by the U.S. Department of Justice, echo many of the concerns the guards' union has long expressed, particularly about staffing, training and promotions.The new assessment could lend those complaints more legitimacy -- and a better chance of being fixed.
San Jose Mercury News
3 Points

Mercury News editorial: Sheriff Laurie Smith should not run again

This county should be in the vanguard -- and still can, if Smith and the supervisors do all they can to take politics out of it. A Blue Ribbon Commission on jail reform chaired by retired Judge LaDoris Cordell wrapped up its good work this month and deposited 121 recommendations in the laps of the county supervisors. And without independent oversight, we have no confidence reforms will hold up.Board of Supervisors President Dave Cortese has said oversight is a priority.
San Jose Mercury News
4 Points

Herhold: What's the fight between Laurie Smith and LaDoris Cordell really about?

Since then, with the blessing of the board of supervisors, the blue-ribbon Cordell commission has been hearing testimony about jail problems. A few hours before the fight, the two had met at Hobee's in Palo Alto, and Smith tried to persuade Cordell to moderate the commission's recommendations. The blue-ribbon commission has made 120 recommendations -- everything from installing an independent auditor to improving the inmate welfare fund. She suspended other guards who had exchanged racist messages.
San Jose Mercury News
8 Points

Inmate gets stitches after brawl breaks out at Santa Clara County jail

So far this year, 78 have been reported at the facility.That includes Tuesday's incident, which began around 8:30 a.m. Jensen said the inmates reportedly involved were not initially cooperative with investigators.Officials also mentioned Tuesday's fight in the context of insinuations from critics that a large March 3 inmate fight was induced to showcase how Sheriff Laurie Smith bypassed county bureaucracy and purchased several surveillance cameras for the Main Jail.
San Jose Mercury News
9 Points