The LaPorte County
Sheriff's Department was established in 1832 under the direction
of its first Sheriff, Benjamin McCarty. During his term, the
first jail was contracted to be built in 1833 for $460. It was a
log building measuring 22' x 16' and was located on what is now
the courthouse plaza.
The succeeding jail was a plank
building built in 1841 or 1842 in the same location. In 1857,
the next jail, a brick structure, was erected on State Street
next to Shafer's Laundry. It was razed to make way for a heating
and lighting plant. It had been vacant for seven years due to
construction of the fourth jail in 1907.
The jail was built
of Bedford stone in approximately the same location where the
Foster and DeGarmo livery barn stood.
In 1977, an eight
million dollar modern facility, the LaPorte County Annex and
Security Complex, was completed. Along with several other county
agencies, it was the new location for the LaPorte County Jail
and Sheriff's Department.
On January 18th, 2002, the
construction of a new five story addition to the Security
Complex began. The project allowed expansion from a 135 bed jail
to 350 beds. The building site is in the location of the old
Schafer's Laundry building, which was razed to make way for the
During its 175+ year history, great progress has
been made in the fields of corrections and law enforcement in