|Seminole County Jail ditches letters for electronic messages. Video calls to take place of inmate visits.|
|By orlandosentinel.com- Michael Williams|
Seminole County Jail inmates can no longer handle letters or pictures mailed by family and friends as a new system requires those incarcerated to view digital copies of their messages.
Under an agreement between the Seminole County Sheriff’s Office and Smart Communications Holding Inc., a Tampa-based company, the jail also plans to replace all in-person visits at the jail with a video-visitation system.
As of Dec. 21, letters meant for inmates must be sent to a post office box in Pinellas Park, where they are opened and scanned. Scans are sent to the jail, where inmates view them using a digital kiosk. Inmates are not charged for the scanning and still can send mail. The contract allows inmates to send and receive electronic messages instantly — similar to text messages or emails, but monitored by jail staff — for a fee.
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