Sheriffs Sued Over Food Profits

Jan 9, 2018

One of two meals per day served at the Etowah County Jail in Gadsden, Ala.
Credit Reuters

Two advocacy groups have sued Alabama sheriffs seeking records about whether the sheriffs are profiting from the food they serve in their jails.

The Atlanta-based Southern Center for Human Rights and the Alabama Appleseed Center for Law and Justice filed the lawsuit yesterday against 49 sheriffs they said did not comply with a public records request.

Alabama law allows sheriffs to keep leftover food money. A federal judge in 2009 ordered one Alabama sheriff, nicknamed "Sheriff Corndog" to be jailed, because he made $200,000 over three years while inmates ate corndogs twice a day.

Alabama Appleseed executive director Frank Knaack said the public has a right to know whether sheriffs "are meeting the basic human needs of incarcerated people in their care, or are instead filling their personal coffers."