To set a new precedent, Laramie County Sheriff Brian Kozak had the entire jail searched for contraband yesterday, Oct. 11.

For the first time ever, deputies, with the help of law enforcement from the Platte County Sheriff’s Office, Wyoming Highway Patrol, and Wyoming Department of Corrections, conducted a facility-wide shakedown.

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"Each inspection team was assigned two K-9s certified in narcotic detection," Public Information Officer Brandon Warner said in a news release. "The K-9s and their handlers searched each common area and cell within the facility."

"This was followed by a team that had been trained in inspecting housing areas for contraband, doing an in-depth search," he added.

Warner says the shakedown didn't reveal any drugs or weapons, just a rope made from a shirt.

"The inmate who had the item was transferred to a suicide watch and received mental health treatment," said Warner. "Kozak said the shakedown may have saved this person’s life."

Warner says Kozak ordered the massive shakedown to set a new tone of accountability within the jail as he introduced a new policy requiring deputies to inspect jail cells daily.

"Inmates will be required to make their beds, tidy their cells, and follow rules, such as not covering lights and air ventilation vents," said Warner.

Warner says inmates who pass inspection will receive time out of their cells in the common area of the pod to watch television, exercise, and socialize; and additional time out will be given to those who complete intervention programs dealing with addiction and violence.

Religious services will also be introduced into the jail.

"Kozak will inspect the pods once a month and the cleanest unit will receive additional privileges," said Warner. "The goal of the new policy is to provide incentives for inmates to follow the rules because this is what we expect when they are released from jail."

Warner says the LCSO will conduct random shakedowns in the future.

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