“Space at Wake County’s jails is rapidly running out, with some inmates already forced to sleep on the floor.

Projections show that Wake County will need to speed up its plan to spend $21.9 million to re-open the detention center annex. And that only solves part of the problem.

“Your jail is full,” said Bill Lawhorn, with CGL Companies, told the Wake County Board of Commissioners on Monday. “You’re starting to push those limits on those empty beds.”


How many jail beds does Wake County have?

Wake County has 1,551 jail beds across two facilities:

  • There are 480 beds across five floors at the maximum-security facility at the Public Safety Center in downtown Raleigh.
  • There are 1,088 beds at the three-story Wake County Detention Center, off of Hammond Road.

There are more inmates staying in the Wake County jail system, and they are staying for longer periods of time.

The average daily jail population was 1,383 in 2023, up 68% from 2000.”

Continue reading: Inmates sleeping on the floors — Wake County is pushing on space limits in jails.