Atlanta city leaders address overcrowding at Fulton County Jail

Another woman is speaking out about what she calls inhumane conditions at the Fulton County Jail. This comes as the Fulton County Commission Chair is calling on the Atlanta City Council to take action to fix the overcrowding.

Ten people have died at the Fulton County Jail just this year. One woman, who asked not to be identified, was held in the jail for three days last weekend on a low level offense and says it hasn't gotten better. She says some cells hold dozens of inmates.


She says female prisoners are held next to men, and some are denied food and water.

"Men are walking past while these women are using the bathroom, while these women are putting their clothes on," the woman said. "You don't feel comfortable in public because you fear if you do one thing, you're gonna end up back in that h---hole."

County leaders have called the situation at the Fulton County Jail an emergency due to overcrowding and lack of staffing.

Commission Chair Robb Pitts asked Atlanta City Council Members to increase the amount of prisoners allowed to be housed at the city jail to its capacity of 1,300. Right now, he says 400 are there. He also wants the criteria for which prisoners can be moved eliminated to allow more transfers.

"That would enable the sheriff, theoretically – I want to emphasize this, theoretically – to better manage that jail better, meaning more efficiently and more effectively because there would be up to 1,000 fewer inmates in the jail," Pitts explained.

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One of the breaches in security found during a routine sweep at the Fulton County Jail on June 2, 2023. (Fulton County Sheriff's Office)

The commission is also considering a plan to move some inmates to detention facilities in Mississippi and South Georgia. But Pitts said they may not have to look out of the city if the capacity at the city jail is increased.

"City leaders agree it's an emergency, and I'm simply asking them to do their part do their fair share in helping to solve this emergency," he explained.

City Council members tell FOX 5 there isn't anything on Monday's meeting agenda regarding the detention center capacity as of Saturday night. County Commissioners will discuss the overcrowding options at the county jail at their meeting on Wednesday.