Dane County Jail

A sheriff's deputy checks on inmates in the Dane County Jail. 

Q: Does Dane County make money by holding inmates in jail from other counties?

A: The Dane County Jail rarely takes in inmates from other counties, and when it does, the county is not paid to house them, Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Elise Schaffer said.

“We really only take inmates from out of Dane County under exceptional circumstances,” Schaffer said. “We simply don’t have the space to do so.”

Exceptional circumstances would include conflicts of interest in another county or particularly high-profile cases, Schaffer said.

An example of a high-profile case is that of Joseph Jakubowski, Schaffer said. Jakubowski had stolen guns from a Janesville store, written an anti-government manifesto and led local, state and federal law enforcement agents on a manhunt last year. He had charges filed against him in Rock County and in federal court, Schaffer said, and was held in the Dane County Jail.

The only time the county is paid to hold inmates from out of county is when someone has Huber privileges, also known as work release, Schaffer said. Under state law, inmates must turn over their wages to a Huber Board, which will then deduct a fee based on the number of hours worked.

– Shelley K. Mesch

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Shelley K. Mesch is a general assignment reporter for the Wisconsin State Journal. She earned a degree in journalism from DePaul University.