The Lew Sterrett Justice Center is a complex of six detention facilities within the Dallas County Sheriff's Department, states the Dallas County Sheriff's Department. It is charged with the care, control and custody of people who have been charged with offenses ranging from a Class C misdemeanor to capital murder.
Within the six detention facilities of Lew Sterrett Justice Center, there are more than 7,100 inmates and a staff of 900 detention employees as of 2015, according to the Dallas County Sheriff's Department. A person is held in this facility when bail has not been posted and the individual is awaiting court or the person has been to court and is awaiting transfer to state or federal prison. A person may also be held at Lew Sterrett if he is summoned by a judge to appear in court in another facility, and Lew Sterrett is holding that person until transferred.
All six detention facilities are self sufficient and operate 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, notes the Dallas County Sheriff's Department. The North Tower Detention facility is extremely modern and holds maximum security inmates, while the West Tower facility houses people with mental problems. Suzanne Lee Kays facility is a direct supervision facility with the detention officers working inside the actual unit, and the George Allen jail is a detention facility that used to be the county's primary jail. Decker Detention Center is permanently closed, and The Old Jail, which is now closed, used to be part of the Criminal Courts Building.