MANILA, Daggett County — Two corrections officers have been fired and a jail commander has resigned amid a state investigation into alleged misconduct at Daggett County Jail.
Jail officials confirmed Wednesday that the jail commander, Lt. Ben Lail, submitted his resignation after Daggett County Sheriff Jerry Jorgensen met with the Utah Department of Corrections this week to review the findings of its investigation.
Details of the alleged misconduct and what lead to the state investigation, however, are still unknown.
State and county officials declined to discuss the investigation's findings or specifics of the misconduct allegations — citing a continuing investigation.
"All I know is the Department of Corrections has let us know that the investigation is still ongoing, so the information involved in the investigation is still confidential," said jail spokeswoman Susie Potter.
Department of Corrections spokeswoman Maria Peterson said the case is still being reviewed by the Utah Attorney General's Office for possible criminal charges.
The names of the two fired corrections officers were also not made public Wednesday.
Potter directed the Deseret News to request their names from Daggett County's Human Resources Department, but requests for information were not immediately returned Wednesday.
In the meantime, the ongoing investigation also means Daggett County will continue to take a financial hit.
More than two months have passed since the jail was emptied of all its 80 inmates while state investigators interviewed jail staff — and as each month goes by, Daggett County loses state revenue. Because the Department of Corrections contracts with Daggett County to house inmates, the county usually receives between $110,000 to $115,000 each month.
That's amounted to more than $200,000 in lost revenue — a big hit to Daggett County's budget.
On an annual basis, state payments for jail inmates make up nearly 30 percent of Daggett County's revenue — or about $1.4 million in 2016, according to Utah's transparency website.
Potter has acknowledged the investigation has caused a "financial hardship" for Daggett County, which is Utah's smallest county with a population of roughly 1,100.Comment on this story
To account for the losses, Potter said the county's budget has had to be "reopened" in order to continue paying the salaries of the jail's roughly 15 full-time employees, who have been kept busy with maintenance projects and cleaning while the jail has sat empty.
Peterson has said state investigators are sensitive to the fact that time is literally money for Daggett County, so they're working toward a concluding their investigation as quickly as possible.
Potter said it's still not known when inmates will return to Daggett County.
"This has obviously been a very difficult situation," Potter said. "We'd like to take care of things in as timely of a manner as possible, but we recognize these things take time."
Contributing: Andrew Adams