ROSEBURG, Ore. -- As the Douglas County Jail reaches capacity more often, officials say it's causing some alleged offenders to walk free.
On Saturday, a Roseburg area transient caused a small explosion behind Rite Aide on Stephen's Street. According to the Roseburg police logs, Rex Tanberg, 52, was cited and released after allegedly causing the explosion.
Roseburg officials say that jail overcrowding is to blame.
Saturday's citation and release at the scene isn't an isolated incident.
Sgt. Jeff Eichenbusch of the Roseburg Police Department says overcrowding has happened for years, but he adds that it's been more frequent lately. "In the past, it would happen every month or two, we would get a notice in the jail saying please cite and release when possible," he said. "Lately, it's become more frequent, and it's probably almost on a daily basis it seems to be."
Eichenbusch says that it can be frustrating for everyone involved.
"If we deal with someone who's a problem in their neighborhood and take them into custody, they can be back within their neighborhood within a short amount of time," Eichenbusch said. "It can be really frustrating for us also because you're working on a case or you're trying to resolve a problem, and then you get to the jail and you can't always take care of that problem. You have to turn around and the person you arrested is leaving before you."
Eichenbusch adds that overcrowding only effects low level offenders.