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Allen County Jail now using video visitation

The Allen County Jail is using new technology in their inmate visitations. Instead of seeing your loved ones every two weeks in person, you can talk to them up to three times a day on video chat.

Posted: Mar 13, 2019 7:16 PM
Updated: Mar 14, 2019 6:38 AM

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WFFT) - The Allen County Jail is using new technology in their inmate visitations. Instead of seeing your loved ones every two weeks in person, you can talk to them up to three times a day on video chat. 

"We're working with an outside company. It's a Virginia based company, GTL. They run all our communications, phone communications inside the jail. And they introduced us to video visitation, and we went and researched it and other departments that are using it. Prison systems are using it now," said Deputy Chief Gary Grant. 

Grant said moving visitation to video saves tax payer dollars, up to 5,000 man hours per year, and protects those going in and out of the jail.

You can either pay $10 to talk to an inmate from home, or you can come to the jail and use a station there to talk for free. 

Some inmates were upset about the loss of in person visitation, but this method also allows them to see their children more frequently. 

"We had a special day a month for children to be able to come in. We had to bring minors in the jail and had to make sure the jail is secure enough to bring the minors in. And now, these parents that are incarcerated in here get to see their children a lot more," Grant said. 

Lt. David Butler said it also closes one more window of opportunity for contraband to get inside the jail. 

"I don't know that we had a huge problem with contraband getting in that way, but anything is possible and we've eliminated one other avenue that it could be possible," he said. 

Right now the program only works through Android on your smart phone, but GTL is working on an Apple app. 

If you want to register to video visit an inmate click here. 

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