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Digital tablets for Davis County inmates to make phone calls

SecureView tablets will be issued to inmates in the Davis County Jail. (Photo: Davis Co. Sheriff)

DAVIS, Utah- All inmates booked into the Davis County Jail will be issued digital tablets when they arrive– but it doesn’t connect to the internet. Instead, the SecureView tablets allow inmates to make phone calls and access jail programming, such as mental health support. They’ll be able to search the jail’s law library and sign required documents for free.

However, if they want to download one of the approved list of movies or listen to music, they’ll have to pay for that. Sheriff Kelly Sparks said a monthly subscription will run for $5, with additional charges for individual items. 

“The fees are pretty typical of what you’d see of any vendor, $2 or $3 for a movie or a dollar for a song they’d choose to download,” Sparks said.

The download fees pay for the whole system, with no taxpayer funds being used. The money comes from the inmates’ jail accounts, and families can contribute to allowing more downloads.

The plan to provide tablets to inmates ran into criticism on the sheriff’s Facebook page. One commenter wrote, “[…] criminals are criminals and they will find a way to misuse this.”

Others defended the program, calling the plan “an amazing opportunity for those incarcerated” that will help them stay in touch with their families.