View Full Version : George warden relieved of duties

03-13-2003, 09:46 PM


LUCEDALE -- Michael Bernhardt has been relieved of his duties as warden of the George/Greene Correctional Facility, according to Sheriff Don Parnell.

Bernhardt was not complying with Mississippi Department of Corrections procedures, Parnell said. After consulting with a representative of Corrections Management Services, Inc., Parnell decided that Bernhardt's services were no longer needed at the jail.

Bernhardt, 57, was hired by the Board of Supervisors in January 2002 on the recommendation of former sheriff George Miller Sr., while the prison was still under construction.

Prior to his job with George County, Bernhardt worked for MDOC for twelve years, most recently at the Stone County Regional Correctional Facility.

In April 2002, just before the jail was opened, Bernhardt was accused of approving prospective employees to attend officer training school and hiring others without the approval of the board of supervisors.

At the time, Supervisor Faye Eubanks was quoted as saying, "He's not coming through the proper channels. He's just going around doing all kinds of things and we're gonna end up paying for it, and it might not even be legal."

"I don't want to build a new jail and then be put in it," she had added.

Ken Jones of the MDOC declined to comment on Bernhardt's dismissal, saying that is was a "county matter" because it is a county-run facility. "They hire and they fire," he added.

Bernhardt did not immediately return our calls.

Staff Development Coordinator Lt. Mitch Howell, who has been with MDOC for about 15 years, will assume the warden's duties in the interim, until a replacement is hired by the board.

03-14-2003, 08:52 AM
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