Guide to the Salt Lake County Jail

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The Salt Lake County Jail holds a mix of minimum-, medium-, and maximum-security inmates.  The jail is divided into four “pods” labeled A-Pod, B-Pod, C-Pod, and D-Pod.  Each pod is further divided into eight housing units, most of which can hold up to 64 inmates at a time.

Inmates are divided based on their behavior, under a relatively new system known as “Direct Supervision” which was developed as an alternative to traditional jail design.  The National Institute of Corrections (NIC) reports that Direct Supervision is effective at encouraging rehabilitation, largely because physical barriers are minimal and “incorporating design elements, fixtures, and furnishings… promote[s] positive inmate behavior.”

Salt Lake County Jail is meant to function as a temporary holding facility for inmates who are scheduled for trial.  It is not meant to house convicted individuals who have already received long-term sentences.

The jail is located at:

3415 South 900 West
Salt Lake City, UT 84119

If you have any questions, you can contact jail personnel by calling (801) 743-5500.  You can also send faxes to (801) 743-7098.

Pretrial Salt Lake County Jail Screenings

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Every defendant who has been booked with the facility must be screened for release prior to trial. Screenings are performed by a Criminal Justice Services Jail Screener.  Before they can be recommended for release, every defendant must meet the following criteria:

  • Inmates must have “verifiable ties to the community,” such as family members or a former employer. Inmates must also be able to supply contact information for these “verifiable ties,” including names and phone numbers, so that jail personnel can confirm the ties.
  • Inmates must be deemed non-threatening to the community.
  • Each inmate’s charges and criminal record must meet the court’s official release guidelines.
  • Inmates must pass a Pretrial Services Policy Board-approved Pretrial Risk Screen.

Visiting Hours and Visitation Policies

Visiting hours vary by day and pod.  For example, while Pod A is open for visitation from 9 A.M. to 9 P.M. on Tuesdays, Pods C and D are closed.  For the facility’s official visitation schedule, please refer to this complete visiting hours table.

While visitation availability changes by pod and day of the week, there are some basic rules and policies which apply to all visitors and inmates.  Make sure you are familiar with these rules so that you can get the most out of your visit:

  • You should arrive at least 45 minutes early.
  • Inmates on work shifts (e.g. kitchen duties) cannot have visitors during their work hours.
  • Inmates are allowed:
    • One visit per day.
    • Two visits per week.
    • Three visitors at a time.  (Note: the limit is two visitors at a time at Oxbow.)
  • If a visitor is 16 or older, he or she must come with a driver’s license or state ID.
  • There are absolutely no visitors allowed, to any pod, during the designated meal times of 11:00 A.M. through 12:30 P.M. and 4:00 P.M. through 5:30 P.M.
  • You can schedule a visit up to one week in advance.  The easiest way to schedule a visit is to call (385) 468-8400 for assistance.
  • Be aware that visits are subject to delay or cancellation.

Remember, the facility is constantly bombarded with phone calls: a little bit of patience and respect when interacting with jail personnel can go a long way toward getting your questions answered efficiently.  If jail staff cannot answer your questions or give you the help you need, it may be a good time to consult with an attorney for additional support.  Attorneys are often able to access jail personnel who are not generally available to consult with the general public.

Good Time: How Inmates Can Reduce Their Prison Sentence

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Good behavior can help shave time off of certain inmates’ sentences.  The Salt Lake County Jail calls this concept “Good Time.”  Under official policy, “Prisoners are eligible for Good Time (credit toward their sentence) if they follow Jail rules and their sentence permits Good Time.”

Inmates with qualifying sentences can earn Good Time by participating in, completing, and/or graduating from educational, vocational, and rehabilitative programs offered at the jail, such as:

  • Earning a High School Diploma or G.E.D.
  • Participating in C.A.T.S. (Therapeutic Community sessions).
  • Any other programs which are approved for Good Time by jail personnel.

There are a few additional points which are important for inmates and loved ones to be aware of:

  • Awarding Good Time is ultimately at jail personnel’s discretion.
  • Good Time cannot be earned if the inmate is on lock down for violating Prisoner Disciplinary Board rules.
  • The maximum cap on Good Time is 10 days per each 30 days of a sentence.  In other words, a 90-day sentence would be capped at 30 days of Good Time, amounting to a 60-day sentence.

Adding Money to a Commissary Account

If you’re a family member, you can also help make your loved one’s stay more comfortable by adding money to their commissary account.  Inmates can use funds from this account to buy snacks and meals, or to make phone calls from the jail.

You can add money to an inmate’s account by either:

  • Sending cash, a check, or a certified money order via mail.
  • Visiting the jail in person.
  • Charging your debit card or credit card through the OffenderConnect service.  OffenderConnect also accepts cash.
  • Making direct commissary purchases through the Access SecurePak service.  Your purchases will then be delivered to the individual.

Contact Our Criminal Defense Attorneys for a Free Consultation

If you or a family member has been charged with a crime in Utah, it’s extremely important to consult with an attorney right away.  Salt Lake County criminal defense lawyer Darwin Overson works with clients facing misdemeanor and felony charges including but not limited to:

  • Assault
  • Drug Crimes
  • Homicide
  • Sex Crimes
  • Weapons Crimes

To set up a free and confidential appointment, call our law offices at (801) 758-2287 today.  We are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and can make jail and holding center visits.