FARGO – Friends and family members of Cass County Jail inmates will see their loved ones in a whole new way starting this week.
On Wednesday, July 11, Cass County Jail implemented a video visitation system whereby visitors talk with inmates via a video call.
Capt. Andrew Frobig, Cass County Jail administrator, said the new system is more efficient and flexible than the previous system where people were separated by glass and talked through a phone.
Friends and family can now sign up for 20-minute blocks online without needing to call in to book an appointment, he said.
The new system allows people to speak with inmates remotely for a fee of $12.95 per call, Frobig said. All that is required is a smartphone or computer and a valid internet connection. Visitors can also use one of five terminals at the jail.
People can also book multiple visits a day, Frobig said. For example, a person can book two 20 minute blocks back to back if they are available.
Previously, visitors could only meet with inmates five days a week for 30 minutes between a two-hour period allocated by the jail for visits, Frobig said. Now, video visits are available seven days a week and at any time between 8 a.m. and whenever the inmate’s housing unit closes for the night, he said.
Face-to-face visits will still be available for lawyers and legal counsel. Family and friend face-to-face visits will be dealt with on a case-by-case basis, he said.