Pontiac Inmates Returned after Decision to Keep Prison Open

March 25, 2009

The Illinois Department of Corrections has returned 44 maximum-security inmates who were transferred out of Pontiac Correctional Center to the prison.

Pontiac prison was targeted for closing by former Gov. Rod Blagojevich, who claimed prisoners could be housed more cheaply at Thomson Correctional Center in western Illinois. Gov. Pat Quinn announced earlier this month the facility will remain open.

Department of Corrections spokesman Derek Schnapp said the maximum-security inmates were transferred Tuesday from Menard Correctional Center. The transfer brings the total population of Pontiac prison to 1,105. Schnapp didn't say why the transfers took place.

Pontiac prison was set to close on Dec. 31, 2008, but a lawsuit filed by the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Council 31, which represents some prison workers, halted the process.

Story source: AP