ARLINGTON COUNTY, Va. -- The Arlington County Detention Facility was transformed Tuesday night into the fictional town, Whoville, in anticipation of a few special visitors.
Some children were given the opportunity to visit their incarcerated parents. “I’m trying not to cry because I don’t want him to think there’s something wrong,” said inmate Amelia Early while she embraced her 3-year-old son.
The inmates who participated are considered low-level offenders. They’ve shown good behavior while in jail and took a parenting course before they were granted time with their children.
Inmate Juwuan Threat said he enjoyed the freedom to hold his son, which is prohibited at the Arlington County facility. No contact is allowed during regular visits.
Threat said he stopped his son from visiting months ago because communicating through glass was unbearable.
“He was looking under the desk trying to figure it out. He thought he could get to me somehow. Once he realized he couldn’t, he cried,” said Threat.
Leaders at the jail said they organize this night so children don’t suffer for their parent’s bad choices.
Typically, it’s for low-level offenders, but a proposal is in the works to get this opportunity extended to those who have committed more violent crimes.