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WNIJ's summary of news items around our state.

Inmate Population Reduction Should Be First Priority For New Illinois Prison Chief

Flickr user miss_millions / " Prison cells" (CC v 2.0)

Criminal justice advocates say Illinois’s next prison chief needs to be dedicated to reducing the inmate population.

The Illinois Department of Corrections Director Donald Stolworthy resigned last week after just two months on the job. Gov. Bruce Rauner’s office is not saying why Stolworthy is leaving.

Ben Wolf is with the American Civil Liberties Union, which is involved in multiple lawsuits over Illinois prison conditions. He says the next prison chief should be an advocate for reform.

“I think a director who tells the truth about what can and can’t be done with close to 50 thousand inmates can lead in directing the state’s attention to safe ways to reduce the number of people in prison,” Wolf said.

Rauner created a task force aimed at cutting the number of inmates by 25 percent over the next decade.