Importing Inmates

Oklahoma City, OK – Law allows out-of-state maximum-security inmates

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) Private prisons in Oklahoma soon could be housing maximum security inmates from other states under a new law that was approved in the waning days of the 2009 legislative session.

The language inserted in an omnibus corrections bill changes state policy that previously allowed only minimum and medium security from other states to be housed in state prisons.

House author Randy Terrill says several safeguards were put in place, including a policy that allows the Oklahoma Department of Corrections to review and approve inmates and the facilities where they will be housed.

But Judith Greene, director of the criminal justice research institute Justice Strategies, says such a policy change is a "recipe for disaster."