Prison Tour Reveals New Safety Improvements
12/13/2010
WHAG-TV - Online

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HAGERSTOWN, MD - Safety was the top concern at the Maryland Correctional Training Center in Hagerstown during a tour for local lawmakers.

The tour at MCTC gave 40 freshman general assembly members an inside look at just how much the facility has improved in terms of security over the past four years.

Mike Stouffer, the Commissioner of Maryland Division of Correction, explains,

"Public safety is not just about maintaining safety of the public, but we do that starting with the inside first, where staff is safe, inmates are safe, and that works it's way out to the community."

Better communication between staff members has helped to make the prison more secure and a brand new housing facility with state of the art security video equipment doesn't hurt either.

Donald Horning, the warden at MCTC, agrees, "The officers running the control center there can really control activities in the unit and with modern camera and video equipment he can really capture anything that occurs in the unit."

After recent inmate escapes, many residents had growing concerns about the growing number of inmates coming to Washington county. So the construction which is higher tech and more secure should help residents sleep a little sounder at night. Inmates will also reap some of the benefits by being provided with better heating units and a new medical center.

"We have been now and continue to do process checks to test our security as much as we can and feel like we have a very good system to make sure that sort of thing doesn't occur," said Stouffer.

With improvements on the way, residents now have the piece of mind that those sentenced to behind bars will stay behind them.

The projects are scheduled to be completed this Spring.