The newest jail in the Los Angeles County detention system, the 1,600-bed medium-security facility unveiled Thursday at Peter J. Pitchess Honor Rancho in Saugus, will probably be at its capacity of prisoners by the end of the week, authorities said.
Sheriff Sherman Block said the largely prefabricated jail built in 16 months is more a Band-Aid on the county's jail overcrowding problem than a solution.
During unveiling ceremonies Thursday, dozens of public officials lauded the new jail's design and its quick and inexpensive construction--$16 million, or about $50,000 per bed less than the national average, officials said.
But Block said it is not the answer to the county's crunch for jail space: "We are terribly overcrowded. This will give us a little immediate relief."