Los Angeles sheriff says 200 county jail inmates released

The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department says at least 200 county jail inmates received early releases this week because of a shortage of beds caused by the downsizing of the population at a detention facility in Castaic.

Sheriff's spokesman Steve Whitmore says the inmates were released beginning Tuesday. Sheriff's department policy requires that most male inmates serve at least 80 percent of their sentence. Whitmore told the Los Angeles Times that these inmates were released after serving only about 50 percent of their sentence because there was nowhere else to place them.

The sheriff's department is trying to cuts its budget by about nine percent by reducing deputy overtime and slashing the inmate population at the north facility of the Pitchess Detention Center.

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Information from: Los Angeles Times

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.

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