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Former Cleveland jail director convicted of misdemeanors

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CLEVELAND (AP) — The former director of the troubled Cuyahoga County jail in Cleveland was convicted Friday of negligently mismanaging the facility where several inmates died three years ago.

Kenneth Mills, 55, of Avon, Ohio, was found guilty of two counts each of misdemeanor falsification and dereliction of duty charges but was acquitted of a felony tampering with records count. He now faces a potential sentence of more than a year behind bars.

More than two dozen witnesses testified at trial that Mills ignored warnings that there were not enough guards, nurses or space to implement a plan to expand the jail and house other cities’ inmates.

Mills resigned in November 2018, shortly before the U.S. Marshals Service issued a report calling conditions at the jail “inhumane.”

Mills’ attorneys argued that the county sheriff, not the jail director, was responsible for conditions inside the facility. They also questioned why no high-ranking officials took action if so many concerns were being raised about conditions at the jail.

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