DETROIT (WWJ/AP) – A Michigan Department of Corrections crackdown on parole absconders following some high-profile criminal cases involving state-supervised convicts is outpacing jail space in the Detroit area.

The result has been increased costs to transport parolees to and from Jackson, department spokesman Russ Marlan told The Detroit News. He said corrections officials are searching for 400 to 500 spots to house those suspected of violating parole.

About half of the state’s 20,000 parolees live in the Detroit area.

Marlan said Michigan’s prison population has increased by about 1,000 since the beginning of the year because of parolees going back to prison, a decline in the number being paroled and a slight increase in court-ordered prison sentences. As of Friday, the state had about 43,800 prisoners.

Without temporary bed space, Marlan said the department is unable to get parole absconders off the streets.

Sara Wurfel, spokeswoman for Gov. Rick Snyder, said: “We’re currently working with the Department of Corrections to evaluate our options and address needs for  short-term beds that have arisen for parole violators.”

MORE: ‘Operation Hemingway’ Seeks To Get Detroit’s Wanted Criminals Off Streets

TM and © Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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