Onslow County Sheriff Ed Brown says security reasons and fire hazards are why he only allows Bibles and legal papers in his jail for his inmates.
On Monday, Cesar Laurean's attorney questioned Brown as to why he, unlike most all other counties in the east, limits reading material for inmates.
Pitt and Craven counties for example allow inmates to have many types of reading material.
Brown says that allowing newspapers, books, or magazines in is a fire hazard, and that prisoners must give up many freedoms when they are in jail. "When you share a community with 170 other people everyone can't have what they want, for themselves, it will infringe and pose a threat or danger."
Brown says this policy has been in place the 19 years he has been sheriff.
Inmates are also only allowed soft bound bibles. Brown says a hard bound book could become a weapon.