DC jail gets new leadership after series of controversies

Legal troubles, complaints about living conditions and rising COVID-19 cases are all reasons the D.C. jail has a new leader at the helm.

Mayor Muriel Bowser appointed Tom Faust on Friday to take over as director of the Department of Corrections. The change in leadership signals major change is on the way at the beleaguered jail.

It is a position Faust knows well: He served as director between 2011 and 2016.

He will replace Quincy Booth, who took over when Faust retired six years ago.

Faust was most recently in charge of the Los Angeles County Probation Department, the country’s largest of its kind.

The new director’s first task will include major reforms at the D.C. jail.

It has been plagued with problems in recent months.

In October, a federal judge found the jail in contempt of court after a Jan. 6 rioter complained about mistreatment while in custody there.

Then a surprise inspection by the U.S. Marshals Service discovered unlivable conditions there that included toilets and sinks that weren’t working in some cells.

Next, the District’s attorney general said last month he would no longer represent correctional officers in ongoing litigation over the jail’s condition.

Now, the facility is caught in the middle of its largest coronavirus surge, according to DCist.

Faust’s first day on the job is Jan. 24.

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