NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - An often combative hearing over future control of Orleans Parish Prison adjourned and will continue Thursday.
On Wednesday afternoon, attorneys for Sheriff Marlin Gusman challenged findings of a consent decree monitor who said that the jail needs to be rebuilt "from the ground up."
Gusman sat silently in court as the monitor testified about numerous shortcomings in jail operations, saying the sheriff had no clue how to run a jail.
Monitor Susan McCampbell testified that two years after the consent decree was implemented, the Orleans jail remains a poorly run and dangerous place. She also testified that there is no plan to bring it into compliance and at the current rate of improvement - when it comes to training - the jail needs to be built from the ground up. She said if Gusman were left to the task, it would be a three- to four-year project, and that's something the judge said he has no patience for.
"I think the judge has heard enough. Whether he does what's said, I don't see an alternative to continue to give time. For what?" said jail reform advocate Norris Henderson.
Gusman's attorney said the sheriff needs more time. He said improvements are being made and cited the fact that there has not been a jail house stabbing in eight months.
After McCampbell wrapped up her testimony, a medical monitor took the stand to discuss jail health care issues.
Judge Lance Africk said he wants to wrap up the hearing by Friday and will likely rule later