A Cook County Jail inmate considered a "habitual offender" was arrested again Wednesday after he was mistakenly released Monday.
Jeremiah Harris, serving a 12-year term, was being held at the county jail awaiting trial in an unrelated murder case and possible probation violation when the mix-up occurred, Cook County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Cara Smith said.
Harris was found not guilty in the murder case and a judge terminated his probation in the weapons case. He was due to return to Stateville Correctional Center to fulfill his sentence, but an error allowed him to be released.
The sheriff's office learned of the error Wednesday morning when a county judge informed them of a mistake with the inmate's paperwork that led to his release. Harris was taken back into custody around 4 p.m. the same day in suburban Carpentersville.
This marks the third time this year an inmate was mistakenly discharged.
In August 30-year-old Steven Derkits was taken back into custody hours after he was accidentally released. Derkits, arrested in July for beating his girlfriend, ended up attacking her again after he was released, authorities said.
In a statement related to that incident, the sheriff's office said it points to a larger, systemic problem in an overcrowded jail where more than 1,200 inmates are transported daily from their cells to court hearings.
"Working with more than a thousand paper files each day invites mistakes that can have serious consequences for public safety," spokesman Ben Breit said. "There is no excuse for this antiquated system to continue in an electronic age."