The Harford County Sheriff’s Office is seeking a new civilian warden for its detention center, four months after Sheriff Jesse Bane left the position vacant for greater “efficiencies” amid an ongoing “restructuring” of the detention center responsibilities within the agency.
The available position was posted on the agency’s employment site Wednesday morning. The listed salary range for the position is $94,661 to $163,613, according to a fiscal year 2010 civilian pay scale posted on the Sheriff’s Office employment page.
In addition, a posting at the detention center for a deputy holding the rank of major will become a captain’s posting, Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Monica Worrell said Tuesday night.
The job posting comes a week after detention center supervisor Maj. Michael Capasso announced his retirement following 25 years at the facility. Several days later, Col. Gregory Carlevaro, the agency’s chief deputy, was assigned to the facility as acting warden on a temporary basis.
“With the retirement of Major Michael Capasso, commander of the Harford County Detention Center, the sheriff announced his plans to begin a search for a warden,” Worrell said in an e-mail Wednesday afternoon. “His plans are to hire a person with an extensive background in corrections with experience in re-entry and mental health issues in a correctional setting.”
Bane himself was not immediately available for further comment.
The series of events began in mid-November with the retirement of Warden Elwood DeHaven, who had held the position since early 2007. At that time, Bane said the position of warden would remain vacant due to economic reasons and a desire to restructure the agency’s operations.
In answers to follow-up questions from The Dagger about Bane’s decision to leave the warden position vacant, Worrell said in November:
“A warden’s duties make him responsible for the administration of the Harford County Detention Center. Those duties and responsibilities are being transferred to the Assistant Warden aka the Major in charge of the Corrections Services Bureau. As stated earlier, Sheriff Bane is attempting to eliminate a layer of bureaucracy. Currently, the population of the HCDC is consistent with this time last year. Sheriff Bane stated that as the population of the HCDC increases, it may become necessary to reassess staffing levels and even consider the position of warden again. Right now, he believes there will be greater ‘efficiencies of operations’ with this restructure. In so doing, he is doing what any other leader of a major corporation would do if he sees a change in operations is needed.”
The warden serves at the pleasure of the sheriff, who has broad discretionary powers to organize the agency and its personnel to meet the needs of public safety.
Since Bane’s original announcement, two men incarcerated at the detention center have died. One died at the facility from medical complications due to drug use, while the other died at a local hospital a week after attempting suicide while in custody.
According to the job posting, the warden “administers and directs operations of the Detention Center” and is “responsible for maintaining a secure and orderly facility that meets or exceeds minimum requirements of [state] commission standards.” The warden is responsible for the well-being of inmates, and supervises all facility correctional officers and staff.
Minimum qualifications include a bachelor’s degree in social or behavioral sciences, correctional administration, or a related field; six years experience in the criminal justice system or closely related work including four years in a managerial role, including grant writing experience; and completion of warden training as mandated by national requirements, according to the posting.