HINDS COUNTY, Miss. (WJTV) – While Hinds County awaits the final decision from the federal court on the jail consent decree, Sheriff Tyree Jones said he will not stop working to make sure the Hinds County Detention Center is in compliance.

It could be days, weeks or months before District Judge Carlton Reeves makes a decision regarding the jail.

There are two options for the jail. One: Place it under a receivership with the Department of Justice (DOJ). Two: If the DOJ and county attorneys come to a new agreement, Judge Reeves would likely take that into consideration.

The consent decree was constructed in 2016 to address what the DOJ labeled as unconstitutional living conditions at the jail, the Henley-Young Juvenile Justice Center and the Work Center.

After three years and a failure to comply, a stipulated order was contracted in 2020. The order is a compacted version of the consent decree with more specific mandates for the county’s compliance. Recently, Judge Reeves placed Hinds County in contempt for violating the consent decree.

Sheriff Jones said no matter what the judge decides, he will follow orders.

“Let me make this perfectly clear, whatever the judge’s decision is in this particular matter, it is my goal and my objective to, first of all, respect whatever the decision is. I believe that our detention centers belong to this county. They belong to the taxpayers of Hinds County as well. I want an opportunity under my administration to be able to fluidly move to the areas that need to be addressed in the areas that need to be concerned to get us out of the current situation that we are in,” said Jones.

If Judge Reeves chooses to put the jail under a receivership, the federal government would have complete control of the jail and the budget. Sheriff Jones and the county would have nothing more to do with the facility.

Sheriff Jones said he believes the jail is his responsibility, and he would like the opportunity to come into compliance, but it may be too late.

As for Hinds County building a new jail, that’s outside the consent decree and would not apply to the receivership.