State Shakes Up Prisons Around Michigan

May 25, 2012

The state Department of Corrections plans to close two prisons and convert one of them to a holding facility for alleged parole violators.

Russ Marlan is with the corrections department. He says there’s a shortage to house felons suspected of violating parole.

 “Every day, there are situations with those parolees where we have to put them into custody while we investigate circumstances surrounding alleged parole violations," he says. "So, right now, we either put them in a van and drive them back to our reception center, or we let them walk out of the parole office.”

The Ryan Correctional Facility in Detroit and an inmate re-entry facility in Caro will be closed. The department will also re-open a shuttered prison in Muskegon as part of the shakeup.

The shakeup will close the last remaining prison in Detroit, and it will force inmates in the facility to be moved out of the city. Detroit lawmakers say the move will pose a burden on families who want to visit inmates, and weaken the support system waiting for prisoners once they’re released.