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Arizona Jail Goes Sing Sing Over "Idol"

3/22/2007 1:18 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

Not only are they behind bars, they're ready to sing in one! What a con test!

Maricopa County Sheriffs have developed their own version of "American Idol," called "Inmate Idle," in which 15 jailbirds battle for lockdown supremacy, not with homemade shivs, but with their singing! According to reps from the Sheriff's Office, the competition is an attempt to boost morale and give inmates a positive way to spend their jail time.

The vote for the six finalists will be held tonight, with Alice Cooper set to judge tomorrow night's live show. It's rumored that basketball legend Charles Barkley is interested in sitting at the judge's table as well.

The Sheriff who greenlit the event, Joe Arpaio, is notorious for his "unique" treatment of prisoners -- his inmates wear pink jumpsuits and live in tents in the middle of the Arizona desert. No need to say that anyone's singing could get them arrested.

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