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BC Jail inmate floods jail cell, living pod

Flood damages offices below

Submitted photo A Brown County Jail inmate flooded a jail cell and living pod on Dec. 27, causing damage to ceiling tiles and soaking offices below, as evidenced by this photo posted on the New Ulm Police Department Facebook site Monday.

NEW ULM — A 32-year-old Brown County Jail inmate from St. Paul flooded a jail cell and living pod Sunday, causing damage to ceiling tile, computers, carpet, furniture and possibly other things.

The inmate was moved to a holding cell, without incident, after the flooding was discovered and water was shut off.

“Brown County Sheriff’s Office deputies, corrections staff, maintenance workers and New Ulm Police Department (NUPD) officers worked as a team in the jail, treating the individual with respect, knowing the whole time our offices were flooded below,” read a NUPD Facebook post Tuesday.

“The inmate was removed from their cell without injury to themselves or any officer, through communication, not force,” read the post. “We are happy that verbal techniques that all staff have been trained in when dealing with difficult individuals, worked.”

Police said the jail water supply was turned off as soon as it could have been.

“We’re still gathering information like total damage lists and amounts for a criminal complaint,” Brown County Sheriff Jason Seidl said. “Charges will include criminal damage to property. The suspect broke a fire sprinkler in the cell and water ran in the jail, and into the second floor offices of the LEC (Brown County Law Enforcement Center).

“It was pretty widespread. We didn’t have to close any offices, but the assessor, recorder and auditor-treasurer offices couldn’t use computers as they usually do,” Seidl said. “I believe the IT (Information Technology) department got some of computers back in operation today.”

Seidl said the flooding did not affect anything in the 911 dispatch center.

“I wished it wouldn’t have happened, but everybody chipped in and helped out,” said Seidl.

(Fritz Busch can be emailed at fbusch@nujournal.com).

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