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Timothy Evans
Cook County's jail less crowded, but problems persist

Cook County's top criminal justice officials said Thursday they were encouraged that the number of inmates at one of the country's largest jails has dropped, but said that a jail remains a dumping ground for the mentally ill and a place where too many people find themselves locked up for months at a time because a flawed criminal justice system makes it impossible for them to get out. In a rare joint appearance by the county's board president, state's attorney, sheriff and chief judge, the speakers took turns outlining changes that might bring down the jail population even more while lamenting the serious flaws that remain that keeps people inside a jail that has for...