There is a new method of visitation at the Lexington County Detention Center. Previously all visitation was done in person, occurring in either the main lobby or directly in the inmate's housing unit.
The new system uses a video chat feature. The inmate and their visitor speak to each other by use of special telephone equipment and can see each other on a video screen. At the time of this writing I do not know if the visitation conversations are being recorded, similar to the way telephone calls from inmates are now being recorded.
I have scanned and posted the jail's brochure about the service here.
This is a similar system to what the Columbia Jail, the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center, has had for several years. I know it is likely a more efficient system for the jail to operate, and when people begin to take advantage of remote visitation this will also be a profit system for the jail. However it does seem to somewhat cheapen the visitation experience for both the inmate as well as their family, which I think will limit the limit the jail's usefulness in rehabilitating some inmates and unfairly punishing others.
About the Lexington County Jail
The Lexington County Detention Center is located at 521 Gibson Road, Lexington, South Carolina 29072. The jail is used by the Sheriff's Department, Highway Patrol, nearly every municipality in the county as well as by the United States to house Federal inmates. It is operated by the Lexington County Sheriff's Department.
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