Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Pasco County jail special report: Supervisor knows the facility well

Head has worked in corrections 23 years, Land O’Lakes since ’01.


Head has worked in corrections 23 years, Land O’Lakes since ’01.

"A jail is designed to control activity," says Maj. Brian Head, the facility's chief. "It's supposed to be mundane, uneventful, very routine. So don't be disappointed."

Head has worked in corrections for 23 years and at Land O'Lakes since 2001. He knows the labyrinthine corridors as well as the name of each member of the jail's staff of 445. A sign in his office that says "Ranch Head" hangs just above the life-size cut-out of John Wayne.

He doesn't hesitate to walk right up to the most dangerous of inmates to hear their requests. He wears a size 62 suit jacket and has a handshake that feels like he could rip off your arm.

He knows by heart how many meals the jail serves every year (1.6 million) and how much each one costs (78 cents); the value of the total products the jail orders every year ($2 million); the monthly cost of prisoners' medications ($43,000); and the number of pigs on the jail's farm (120).

Unlike a prison, where convicts serve out their sentences, a jail is for temporary detentions. Inmates are waiting to make bail, or they are being held without bail; they are crediting time toward their sentence, serving a misdemeanor sentence of less than a year, or waiting to be transferred. Or they have nowhere else to go.

"The jail is a dumping ground for people with mental health problems because there are no treatment centers," Head said, watching a monitor of a prisoner in solitary confinement.

In cases where inmates don't belong in prison, he says, "it's a waste of the taxpayer's money."

Although he sees it every day, Head said he doesn't understand why the county (and the state, and nation) incarcerate so many people.

"If I knew that, I wouldn't be major," he said. "I could be president."

Pasco County jail special report: Supervisor knows the facility well 08/08/09 [Last modified: Saturday, August 8, 2009 12:18pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Observations from a liberal, gay, Latino, feminist Florida House freshman


    State Rep. Carlos Guillermo Smith, D-Orlando,  rocked the Florida LGBTA Democratic Caucus dinner at Tallahassee's Hotel Duval Satursday night with his unabashedly liberal and passionate take on the myriad issues he said are key to LGBTQ Floridians. Among them: Access to guns, Reproductive rights, home …

    Carlos G. Smith
  2. Delta Sigma Theta honors outgoing national president

    Human Interest

    During her four years as national president of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., Paulette Walker said she always focused on the comma between "Sorority" and "Inc."

    Paulette Walker, the former director of undergraduate programs and internship in the College of Education at the University of South Florida, will be honored on Saturday for her leadership in the Delta Sigma Theta sorority.
  3. 10 sailors missing, 5 hurt in collision of USS John S. McCain

    SEOUL —Ten U.S. Navy sailors are missing and five have been injured after the USS John S. McCain destroyer collided with an oil tanker near Singapore early Monday morning.

    In this Jan. 22, 2017, photo provided by U.S. Navy, the USS John S. McCain patrols in the South China Sea while supporting security efforts in the region. The guided-missile destroyer collided with a merchant ship on Monday, Aug. 21, in waters east of Singapore and the Straits of Malacca. Ten sailors were missing, and five were injured, the Navy said. [James Vazquez/U.S. Navy via AP]
  4. Pasco County Fire Rescue fighting a two-alarm fire started by an explosion


    Two houses are on fire and one victim has been critically burned and taken to a trauma center following an explosion at a home at 8652 Velvet Dr, in Port Richey.

  5. Rays see the Blake Snell they've been waiting for in win over Mariners

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — It was a one-run game Sunday when the Mariners' Robinson Cano singled with one out in the seventh inning, bringing the dangerous Nelson Cruz to the plate.

    Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Blake Snell (4) throwing in the third inning of the game between the Seattle Mariners and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Sunday, Aug. 20, 2017.