OROVILLE, Calif. - A new program has been adopted for the Butte County Jail to help speed up the trial process for inmates with mental health problems.
Supervisors approved the program on Tuesday, Oct. 9.
Sheriff Kory Honea told said the problem is the lack of bed space in the state hospital.
Now the Butte County Jail can house and treat those inmates and help get them to a point where they understand the charges against them.
Before the board of supervisors approved the program the inmates would have to wait for space to open at the state mental hospital.
"From our perspective, that doesn't do anybody any good," Honea said. "It doesn't do the inmate any good, it doesn't do our staff any good, and it certainly doesn't help further the interest of justice because often times people will go without treatment and they continue to decompensate and their condition worsens."
The county jail partnered with the California Forensic Medical Group to treat the inmates.
That treatment includes medication, counseling and some education.
Honea said the state will be funding the treatment for inmates while they are in custody.