Virginia sheriff sues city over abrupt jail condemnation

Virginia sheriff sues city over abrupt jail condemnation
The attorney for Portsmouth Sheriff Michael A. Moore asked the court Friday to order the city explain why it should condemn the jail instead of repairing or replacing it.

PORTSMOUTH, Va. (AP) — A Virginia sheriff has sued his city for condemning its jail and Civic Center buildings without warning.

The Virginian-Pilot reports the attorney for Portsmouth Sheriff Michael A. Moore asked the court Friday to order the city explain why it should condemn the jail instead of repairing or replacing it. The condemnation and evacuation orders were announced last week during the closing minutes of a Tuesday City Council meeting. Moore sued, and a judge issued a 60-day injunction Thursday.

City Manager Lydia Pettis Patton says a review of contractor reports from April and May determined the buildings aren't safe. The reports cite issues including rodents and eroding concrete, noting that the Civic Center needs about $59 million in repairs. Sheriff's Col. Marvin Waters says the reports' findings don't require immediate closure.

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