Buchanan County Sheriff responds to auditor’s report on jail inconsitencies

Published: Aug. 18, 2021 at 5:47 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

INDEPENDENCE, Iowa (KCRG) - The Buchanan County Sheriff is responding to State Auditor Rob Sand’s report that some people in the Buchanan County Jail got out earlier or stayed longer than their sentences.

According to the report, which covered the period of July 1, 2018, through August 13th, 2020, up to 40 people served more jail time than their sentence dictated. The audit also found more than 100 instances where a person served less time than his or her sentence. Most were only one or two days off, but one person got out 53 days early.

The audit found an additional 132 instances where there wasn’t adequate paperwork to determine if the jail time served was accurate.

Buchanan County Sheriff Scott Buzynski, who took the position of sheriff in January, said the investigation was before his time. He said he had been made aware of what was going on before he took office.

Buzynski helped the county hire a records clerk for the jail last December while he was sheriff-elect. Buzynski admits things in the past were not recorded the way they should have been. They have been checking in more with jail staff.

“Making sure that judges’ orders and court orders are being complied with and getting filed properly,” Buzynski said. “I believe in the past a lot of them were being completed but not being filed or recorded the way they should have been.”

Buzynski said the incidents were an honest mistake.

“We’re rectifying it,” he said. “We’re trying to be as open and forthcoming as possible with the incident. It wasn’t done to hide or gain anything. This is just something that’s a bad situation and we’re going to rectify it.”

Sand said it doesn’t appear to be any financial transactions that took place for people to get out. He said a jail worker tipped the auditor’s office off when they noticed a person out on the streets who should have been behind bars.

Copyright 2021 KCRG. All rights reserved.