Former Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s “Tent City Jail” Being Taken Down
Former Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio's infamous "Tent City Jail" is being taken down by the new sheriff in town.
Former sheriff Joe Arpaio's outside jail was known all over the United States. Since 1993, "Tent City" was known to be unbearably hot (120 degrees in the summer), no meat on the menu, only educational television is allowed and the color pink as far as the eyes can see. People would even schedule tours to go and check out Tent City for themselves.
Now there's a new sheriff in town and Tent City is no more. So far, one of the five jail yards in Tent City has been dismantled by work crews at the command of the new sheriff, Sheriff Paul Penzone. A second jail yard is in the process of being dismantled now. Sheriff Penzone says dismantling Tent City is about finding more productive ways to penalize rule breakers, while also saving money on overtime. He estimates that the county can save about $4.5 million in overtime expenditures.
So what will happen to the former Tent City space?
Sheriff Penzone is looking to possibly move the county's MCSO Animal Safe Haven (MASH) Unit. Moving the county's MASH unit would allow more inmates to work with the shelter animals and allow more animals to be saved. MASH is a no-kill shelter that helps animals that were abused and neglected. Allowing prisoners to work with the animals teaches them compassion and personal responsibility. Prisoners that work with the program usually are discouraged from committing more crimes in the future.