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The State moving 150 sex offenders to Woodbridge
BY TOM HESTER SR.
The state Department of Corrections will move 150 sex offenders from its Special Treatment
prison in Kearny to a high-security unit at East Jersey State Prison in Woodbridge by mid-May,
officials announced Friday.
The shift is part of a shake up in the imprisonment and handling of inmates within the state
prison system that follows recommendations made by Gov. Chris Christie’s corrections
The changes also call for the 240-bed gang unit at Northern State Prison in Newark, used to
house potentially dangerous convicted gang members, to be dismantled and the inmates
reassigned to appropriate wings or prisons.
Corrections officials during the Corzine administration considered the influence of gang
members in the prison system as a serious problem.
The 48-bed Special Sentencing Unit at New Jersey State Prison in Trenton, which once housed
condemned prisoners before the death penalty was eliminated, will be converted for general
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State moving 150 sex offenders to Woodbridge
Friday, 26 March 2010 21:57 –
The sex-offender shift from Kearny to East Jersey was sparked by a state court ruling sought by
Hudson County that the Special Treatment prison had to be vacated. The sexually violent
inmates will be held in a stand-alone, secured unit that currently contains single rooms on the
grounds of East Jersey.
Corrections officials expect the transfer will also save $2.3 million, money the DOC paid
annually to Hudson to lease the Kearny prison.
The DOC already houses about 250 sex offenders at East Jersey. The state Department of
Human Services provides them therapy.
Corrections Commissioner Gary M. Lanigan said, “As per the recommendations of the transition
report, and given the court order to vacate the Kearny Unit, these operational efficiencies will
translate into real dollar savings without compromising public safety. I have great confidence in
the ability of our staff to continue to keep our facilities — and, by extension, the adjoining
neighborhoods — safe and secure.”