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Washoe County Officials May Not Be Following Jail Law

RENO, Nev. (AP) — Washoe County officials may not be following a state law requiring regular reviews of the condition of inmates at the county jail where there's been a dramatic spike in deaths and suicides over the past three years.

The Reno Gazette-Journal reports a state law mandates that the county commission inspects the facility every three months and "inquire into the ... treatment and condition of the prisoners."

County Manager John Slaughter says he meets with Sheriff Chuck Allen once a month to discuss issues at the jail.

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Three maintenance workers are stationed there for building upkeep. But Slaughter says the county doesn't currently have any formal program in place to do inspections every three months.

A recent investigation by the newspaper found the jail's death rate since 2015 has been nearly five times higher than the national average.