Just over a week after an explosion at the Escambia County Jail’s central booking facility, the building is back under county control as the investigation is continues.
The state Fire Marshal’s Office returned the jail to the County Commission on Thursday, after leading the investigation into the blast which killed two inmates and injured 184 others. The initial report did not raise any eyebrows.
Inmates from the Escambia County Jail are scattered around detention facilities and hospitals in Escambia and Santa Rosa Counties after Wednesday night’s explosion at the lockup. The blast is believed to have originated in a rear laundry room on the first floor, according to officials.
“Anything for a Buck,” launched in 2011 to take illegal guns off the streets of Escambia County, is among several stings run by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives that are now under investigation by the Justice Department.
An arrest warrant sweep dubbed “Operation Smoking Gun” netted 61 arrests last month, according to Escambia County Sheriff David Morgan.
That and future such operations are aimed at whittling down the roughly 25,000 outstanding warrants the Escambia County Sheriff's Office deals with on any given day. But Morgan says that’s actually down from the 34,000 that he inherited when he took office in 2009.