CC jail

The Coffee County Jail.

Officials with the Coffee County Sheriff's Department have launched an internal investigation after an inmate was left at the Coffee County Justice Center overnight Thursday, February 7. 

The inmate, Carl Dalton Williams, 33, was transported from the Coffee County Jail to the justice center for a hearing on Thursday, but was never returned to the jail. Deputies with CCSD arrived at the justice center early Friday (Feb. 8) for training and discovered Williams near the gazebo area outside the building. 

"Luckily, he stayed," said CCSD Captain Billy Butler, who emphasized that a thorough investigation is underway to determine why Williams was left behind and who is responsible. 

"We are going to find out what happened and take corrective actions, and there will be recommendations made," said Butler. "We made a mistake and we are going to fix it."

Butler said there were a couple of "critical errors" involved. 

"This should have been discovered immediately when the transport officers got back [to the jail]," said Butler. "I'm not sure if there is a [roll] sheet when they come back but there should be. They've got to have the same count come back that left." 

Officials also said that Williams' absence should also have been noticed during checks of his cell. Williams is incarcerated for charges of domestic violence, although he has not been to trial. 

"Another glitch we have had, we are in the process of changing our reporting systems, there might be a glitch in that, but we aren't exactly sure," said Butler, who added that all areas will be checked to ensure a similar error does not occur.

Officials said that Williams was in good health and was checked out by medical personnel Friday morning. He remained shackled and handcuffed through the night he was at the justice center. 

Butler said that Williams did not have access to offices or sensitive information while inside the building. More information will be reported as it is obtained. 

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Josh has worked at the Times since 2005. He has been named "Top 25 Under 35" by Editor & Publisher Magazine & "Top 30 Under 30" by the National Newspaper Assoc. Enjoys running, UT Football, spending time with his wife, Holly, and 2 kids Cole and Gracie.

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