Porter County Sheriff's Office

What's Happening at The Porter County Sheriff's Office


Jail House Rock 2002

Special Thanks to Tony Dujmovich
For Our Jail House Cartoon!

Jailhouse Rocks!!
Plenty of volunteers pay to be 'inmates'
at the new county jail

BY KEN KOSKY Times Staff Writer
Posted on Saturday, June 29, 2002

Officer Mary Gaydos gives a tour to a group of  volunteer "inmates"


VALPARAISO -- When Porter County Sheriff David Reynolds offered everyday citizens a chance to be "inmates" for an evening at the new Porter County Jail -- complete with an opportunity to wear a striped jail shirt and eat beans and weenies for dinner -- it was an offer plenty of curious people couldn't resist. People lined up at the jail entrance for Friday night's "Jailhouse Rock," an event to show off the new jail and raise money for nonprofit organizations  In the first hour alone, about 100 people toured the jail. Many decided to sit in a cell so they could get a commemorative photo, while others dined on jail food or listened to the music by the policeman/firefighter band Guns & Hoses. "A lot of jails don't open it up to the public," Reynolds said.  "I think the public has a right to see where their tax dollars are going, and it seems like everybody's having fun." The money raised from the $25 ticket price benefited three nonprofit organizations.  People could even pay to have a friend tossed into a cell. Attorney Larry Rogers, who has made a career out of getting people out of jail, was one of the first "offenders" people paid to see locked up. "I think it was a fabulous idea," Jane Strayer said of Friday's Jailhouse Rock. Strayer, a Valparaiso teacher who attended with fellow teacher Cathy Tursman, added, "We're always up for adventure and this sounded like an adventure."  After her tour of the jail, Strayer said she was impressed by how secure the new jail is. "I'd say we're very impressed," she said. "I know what the old jail looks like (from tours) and this is much nicer," Tursman added.  Valparaiso resident Betsy Dunevant, who took pledges and ran the Boston Marathon to raise money for charity, said the Jailhouse Rock was another chance to support The Caring Place, Opportunity Enterprises and Porter-Starke. "I think we'll bring the kids for the pancake breakfast," Dunevant said, referring to today's breakfast event for families at the jail. Political candidates Dave Chidester and Dan Whitten, along with Valparaiso Mayor David Butterfield, were among the public figures attending.  "This gives even more people an opportunity to see the place," Butterfield said. "I wanted to see it for myself. I had heard a lot about it being state of the art," Whitten said. "This is a world apart. This is really something, having seen the old jail.  Even the young people thought it would be a fun way to spend a Friday night. "It sounded like fun, the whole thing," said Rebekah Kretzmann, 15, who attended with her twin sister, Rachel, and their friend, 14-year-old Anna Bremer. Teri Mialkowski of Valparaiso said she was impressed by the jail, especially how light and bright it is. But she also was surprised to learn the jail earns money off a lot of the privileges the inmates have, like telephones, television and snacks. "Once the doors lock, you wouldn't want to be there," she said.  Mary Beth Schultz, executive director of The Caring Place, said the Jailhouse Rock was a creative way to raise funds in advance of the August opening of the jail. "Once the jail has inmates, we won't be able to do this again," she said.


Calumet College of St. Joseph sponsored the event that benefited
Porter Starke, Opportunity Enterprises and The Caring Place

Guns & Hoses Provided The "Jail House Rock"



Sheriff Reynolds is one of the first "arrestees"


Shirley Remijan from Opportunity Enterprises and
Dave Lomaka from Porter Starke both seem to be having fun!!


A surprise visit from "The Blues Brothers"
wait.......isn't that Mary Beth Schultz from the Caring Place?
Make that the "Blues Brothers and Sister"

The Blues Brothers (Left to Right)
Dave Lomaka of Porter Starke, Gary Mitchell of Opportunity
 Enterprises and Mary Beth Schultz of The Caring Place

Sheriff Reynolds and Dave Lomaka from Porter Starke

Elvis was In The House!


Sergeant Dave Leuthardt does time after being "arrested"

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