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California State Prison

Corcoran State Prison

Corcoran State Prison

The Corcoran State Prison, formally known as the California Substance Abuse Treatment Facility and State Prison, Corcoran, is a male only facility that is located in Kings County in the city of Corcoran. The Corcoran State Prison is considered to be a medium to maximum security facility, housing over 7,600 inmates.
The Corcoran State Prison was first constructed to have a total capacity of less than 3,500, which is more than double the amount of prisoners currently held there. The Corcoran State Prison first opened in 1997, with the ultimate goal in mind of not only providing for the necessary facilities to house prisoners, but to also provide treatment to criminals with a history of substance abuse.
The Corcoran State Prison sits on about 280 acres of land, providing for various types of facilities. The housing units are separated into levels, with Level I housing entailing the least security. Level II housing contains open dormitories surrounded by fences. Level III housing contains cells with fenced perimeters as well as armed surveillance. Level IV housing includes the same security measures as those in Level III, with the addition of more staff and armed surveillance as well as electronic security.
The most famous facility and program involves two institutions that house over 700 inmates each, which are meant to provide for the substance abuse treatment for those inmates that are considered to be of minimal risk. Actor Robert Downey Jr. is famously known to be one of the celebrities to have served time at Corcoran State Prison and was housed in this particular facility.

Ironwood State Prison

Ironwood State Prison

Ironwood State Prison is a minimum to medium security level penitentiary that is located in Riverside County, California, right in the city of Blythe. Ironwood State Prison shares its premises with another facility, the Chuckawalla Valley State Prison. 
Both comprise a total of 1,700 acres of property that is owned by the state. Out of this land, Ironwood State Prison occupies roughly about 650 acres. The prison complex itself is about 350 acres, which has a total of five inmate housing facilities. Four of these are considered to be Level III security level facilities, while the other remaining compound is an outside Level I facility.
Within each of these facilities there are five 270 housing units. The total capacity for each in terms of bed capacity is 100. One of the Level III housing units located in Facility A has recently been integrated as an Administrative Segregation Unit. The minimum security complex is divided into two 100 bed housing units. The total inmate capacity of Ironwood State Prison was design to hold a total of about 2,200 inmates. However, there are nearly 4,000 prisoners currently housed at the Ironwood State Prison.
The ethnic groups that are found at Ironwood State Prison are primarily of Mexican descent, with Blacks being the second largest ethnic groups. Other Hispanic backgrounds and whites comprise the rest of the population, with a minority of other ethnicities. 

Donovan State Prison

Donovan State Prison

Richard J. Donovan Correctional Facility, also commonly referred simply as the Donovan State Prison, is a medium security penitentiary that began operations in July of 1987. Even though most of the inmate population is considered to be a medium security level, there are inmates housed in the prison that are classified as high security risks as well.
The Donovan State Prison is located in San Diego County, California, and has a total of 780 acres of property. The Donovan State Prison has two general facilities, Level III and Level IV General Population Facilities. There is also a Minimum Support Facility housing inmates that considered being less of a security risk within its compound. 
There are also two Reception Center Facilities and a Sensitive Needs Yard. The overall purpose of the Donovan State Prison is centered on training and work-oriented programs. Also, there are various educational and industrial programs instituted as well, so as to provide for the necessary training for inmates to prepare for life after incarceration.
One of the more progressive and innovative programs that the Donovan State Prison has to offer is the Convicts Reaching Out to People, or CROP. This program allows for inmates to have personal discussions with young adults regarding their personal experiences with drugs, violence, and gang life. The inmates give a first-hand account to these juveniles regarding the dangers that are inherent with these kinds of activities and stress the importance of avoiding such criminal behavior.

California State Prison

California State Prison

The California State Prison System is one of the largest in the United States. It is administered by the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, supervising over 170,000 inmates. Such a figure translates to about 475 inmates for every 100,000 California residents. California State Prisons have, for quite some time, been the subject of controversy due a variety of factors. 
Firstly, the entire California State Prison System has been under fire due to the fact that the state has a very large and diverse population and a history of both gang violence and drug related crimes. Furthermore, California State Prisons have become well-known for being extremely overcrowded.
In total, the facilities in California are designed to house about 83,000 inmates, which the current population is at more than double that figure. Furthermore, issues regarding overpopulation of California State Prisons have also brought out other factors, such as inadequate facilities, medical care, and treatment of prisoners.
In recent years, the issue of overpopulation in California State Prisons has warranted Federal involvement. One of the proposed plans is to move inmates to other facilities in other states. Currently, California prisons use private institutions as well as correctional facilities in three other states, Arizona, Mississippi, and Tennessee, to alleviate some of the overpopulation issues in the various California State Prisons. 
Some the most well-known California State Prison facilities include Folsom State Prison, San Quentin State Prison, Pelican Bay State Prison, and Ironwood State Prison. 

Chino State Prison

Chino State Prison

Chino State Prison, which is actually named the California Institute for Men, is most well-known and referred to in relation to the city it is located in, Chino, California, found in the county of San Bernardino. The facility itself functions more of a reception center for those that are newly convicted felons or those out on parole that are returning to custody. Most of these individuals will hail from Southern California.
Chino State Prison was first opened in 1941 as the largest minimum security facility in the United States. Chino State Prison is also the fourth California State Prison to be built, is now considered to be the third-oldest in the state. Chino State Prison is meant to hold only over 3,000 inmates and prisoners, though its current population is much closer to 6,000, almost doubling the initial capacity of the institution.
The facilities of the Chino State Prison are built on about 2,500 acres of land. The largest facility is the Level I structure, which also the largest Level I population in the state of California. Level I refers to the security level of the building, which is minimal, consisting of open dormitories that are not confined by a secure perimeter. 
There are also a total of three Reception Centers, which serve as temporary housing for individuals entering that need processing. The Reception Center Central accommodates inmates that are to be considered medium to maximum level security risks, while Reception Center East takes the same security level inmates, though these have special needs or considerations, such as outpatient care and similar medical situations.

Folsom State Prison

Folsom State Prison

Folsom State Prison is the second oldest facility of its kind in the state of California, only behind San Quentin. Folsom State Prison is located outside of the state capital of Sacramento in the city with the same name. Folsom State Prison opened its doors in 1880, and is one of the first maximum security facilities in the United States. It was also the first facility to have electricity, which may be why it also saw the execution of nearly 100 inmates over a span of just over forty years.
As of ten years ago, the total population housed at the Folsom State Prison was about 4,400 inmates. However, the original plans for the facility on meant to house less than 2,000, making it one of the most overpopulated state prisons in California. 
The inmates are separated into five housing units which make up most of the facility of the prison, which cell Unit 1 being one of the most overpopulated cellblocks in the United States, with almost 1,200 inmates. The cells are all constructed to have a toilet, sink, storage space, and bunk beds. There are two dining halls in Folsom State Prison, and a large exercise yard at the center of the facility and two smaller yards. 
Even though Folsom State Prison is known to be one of the more hostile prisons in the country, the facility is probably best known due to Johnny Cash’s song titled “Folsom Prison Blues.” Furthermore, Cash also performed twice at the Folsom State Prison, making it one of the most well-known popular culture references to date.

Soledad State Prison

Soledad State Prison

The Salinas Valley State Prison, more popularly known as Soledad State Prison, is located in Monterey County, California, in the city of Soledad. The Soledad State Prison is a facility that is meant to house both minimum and maximum security level inmates. The Soledad State Prison is solely for male prisoners. 
The irony behind The Soledad State Prison is the fact that the city’s name, “Soledad,” means “solitude” in the Spanish language, more than an apt name for a penitentiary. The Soledad State Prison opened its doors in May of 1996, with a facility that was designed to hold just over 2,200 prisoners. However, Soledad State Prison has become over populated, housing as many as 4,500 as of 2007. Due to rising numbers in the population, the gymnasium of the prison has since been converted into a dormitory facility.
The Salinas Valley State Prison is on 300 acres of land, divided into four yards, A, B, C, and D. The C Yard has become notorious as being the most violent on the premises. There are housing units surrounding these yards, which the highest level of security risk inmates, both Level III and Level IV. 
A distinct factor that plays in the violence found in the Soledad State Prison is its distinct segregation of ethnic groups, which are separated as southern and northern Mexican, white, black, and Asians. Most of the violence that erupts between the ethnic groups usually involves the southern Mexican groups and the whites, causing an internal ethnic war.

Calipatria State Prison

Calipatria State Prison

The Calipatria state prison is one among the many male only state prison facilities in California. It is located in the city of Calipatria, California, within Imperial County. The Calipatria State Prison facility first opened its doors in 1992, less than two years before the Centinela State Prison would open, which is also located in Imperial County. The Calipatria State Prison is often times referred to as the lowest prison in the Western Hemisphere, due to the fact that it is situated at approximately 184 feet below sea level. The original design for Calipatria State Prison was meant to hold a maximum of 2,200 inmates, though current population numbers are at about 4,200 prisoners housed in the facility. The staff consists of over 1,100 and has an annual budget of about $123 million.

The facility sits on over 1,200 acres, with the prison itself occupying about 300 acres. The Calipatria State Prison is classified as a minimum to maximum security level complex, covering the entire spectrum in terms of the types of criminals that can be found on its premises. More than 2,000 of its housing units are dedicated for inmates that are qualified as maximum security risks, which means that there are fenced or walled perimeters, electronic security measures, and armed security staff at all times. The minimum security facility consists of open dormitories with a fenced in perimeter. One of the interesting features of the Calipatria State Prison is the fact that there is a $1.5 million dollar electrified fence system, which actually causes instantaneous death when touched, which is meant to deter inmates from escaping.

The Calipatria state prison is one among the many male only state prison facilities in California. It is located in the city of Calipatria, California, within Imperial County. The Calipatria State Prison facility first opened its doors in 1992, less than two years before the Centinela State Prison would open, which is also located in Imperial County. The Calipatria State Prison is often times referred to as the lowest prison in the Western Hemisphere, due to the fact that it is situated at approximately 184 feet below sea level. The original design for Calipatria State Prison was meant to hold a maximum of 2,200 inmates, though current population numbers are at about 4,200 prisoners housed in the facility. The staff consists of over 1,100 and has an annual budget of about $123 million.

The facility sits on over 1,200 acres, with the prison itself occupying about 300 acres. The Calipatria State Prison is classified as a minimum to maximum security level complex, covering the entire spectrum in terms of the types of criminals that can be found on its premises. More than 2,000 of its housing units are dedicated for inmates that are qualified as maximum security risks, which means that there are fenced or walled perimeters, electronic security measures, and armed security staff at all times. The minimum security facility consists of open dormitories with a fenced in perimeter. One of the interesting features of the Calipatria State Prison is the fact that there is a $1.5 million dollar electrified fence system, which actually causes instantaneous death when touched, which is meant to deter inmates from escaping.

Centinela State Prison

Centinela State Prison

Centinela State Prison is a male only facility that is located in Imperial County, just outside from the cities of Imperial and El Centro. The Centinela State Prison was opened in 1993, serving as a minimum to medium security level prison facility to the state of California. The original capacity for the Centinela State Prison is meant to house just over 2,300 prisoners, though current capacity levels double that amount, currently being at just over 5,000 inmates.
The Centinela State Prison has a total of 2,000 acres for its premises, with a total of about 1,200 staff members and an annual budget of $161 million. Even though it is considered to be a medium security level prison, it does have Level IV and Level III facilities in the complex. There is one Level IV and three Level III facilities, which are comprised of five buildings in each yard. All of the cells are meant to have double occupancy and the premises are enclosed by a fenced in perimeter and armed surveillance. 
The Level I yard, which is the minimum security facility, has two buildings with an open dormitory, which has a capacity of 200 inmates per building. This complex is also secured by fenced in perimeter, though there are no armed personnel standing watch. Other facilities in the complex include the Correctional Treatment Center, which houses medical and dental facilities, the Administrative Segregation facility, and even a Firehouse, where inmates are trained as firefighters as part of the rehabilitation program.

Kern Valley State Prison

Kern Valley State Prison

Kern Valley State Prison is located in Delano, California, and is actually next to another prison facility, which is known as North Kern State Prison. Kern Valley State Prison is considered to be a maximum level facility which opened in June of 2005, making it one of the newest state prisons in California. Originally designed to hold less than 2,500 inmates, the population currently held at Kern Valley State Prison is more than double that amount, at just over 5,000 inmates.
Kern Valley State is comprised of four facilities that house the inmates, while two separate stand-alone buildings house the Administrative Segregation Units. All of these facilities are encircled by an electrified perimeter fence. Furthermore, there is also a minimum security facility within Kern Valley State Prison, which is known as the Level I Minimum Support Facility. Facility D is the housing unit that is considered to be temporary and holds inmates while they are being processed. The entire complex sits on about 600 total acres.
Kern Valley State institutes various types of programs to serve the inmates, such as providing for different work assignments as well as educational opportunities and even vocational training programs. Even though it is meant to be a maximum security prison, the main goal for the Kern Valley State Prison stems from the idea of rehabilitation and preparing inmates for life after incarceration.