A neighbor is going to serve a 3-week term in a local (minimum security) lockup later this summer. Can anyone advise me on visits, etc.? Can I take books or magazines? Snacks? For such a short term, I wonder if they will even allow visitors -- wouldn't we all need a background check to go see him? Thanks for any advice ... and I promise not to ask how you know what to do :-(
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Here is some info on visitation at the jail in Toledo:
They have a ton of info at: http://www.drc.ohio.gov/Public/toci.htm
Hope that helps.
Tell him to see if he can get into a work release program. That means he leaves the lockup to go to work and then he checks back in right after work. Remind him he has to pass a drug test.
Minimum security jail is not prison, but it's still jail. Advise him to read a few items about survival in prison and apply what he's learned. You, the concerned third party, can also pay someone to be his friend while he's in jail.
No, you don't need some kind of extensive background check. You might get searched though, so be prepared - if you see what I mean.
Remind everyone concerned that the guilty party is going to survive this. The number of people who actually die while incarcerated is extremely low, and lower still when taken as a percentage of the total number of people incarcerated. Shoot, from what I've read some people like prison so much they go right back after they've been paroled, so it can't be all that bad, can it?
Oh, and my last thought, and I'm serious here. Have the soon to be incarcerated person visit a dentist immediately and get any dental work completed before he becomes a burden to the taxpayer. If you come down with the toothache in jail, tough luck. They won't help you nor will they give you anything for the pain.
One quick additional item to add to madjack's advice: when visiting jail or prison, do what you are told and do not give the staff any grief. If you are deemed to be a problem visitor, you can be barred from future visits. Play nice and be especially respectful of all rules, no matter how petty or weird they seem.
No you can not take books or magazines to an inmate. NO you can not bring them snacks as it is a security issue ( easy to put drugs etc in food). Snacks can be bought thru Commisary by the inmate. In the long run it would by better to deposit twenty bucks in their account and then you don't have to worry.
RockChick is right - the best way to get snacks an other things to an inmate is by putting money on their jail account. That also allows them to buy phone cards if they choose.
As for MJs weird journey into the mortality rate of prisoners...There is absolutely no reason to believe ANYTHING will happen to a person in jail, especially for such a short term. Unless your friend has a big mouth and no common sense, they will be just fine. The only client I have ever seen come out of jail with any kind of injury was mentally unstable and had a tendency to say things that were seriously offensive. And he only wound up with a black eye.
Madjack said: "Remind everyone concerned that the guilty party is going to survive this. The number of people who actually die while incarcerated is extremely low, and lower still when taken as a percentage of the total number of people incarcerated." He was not going on a weird tangent; he was simply reassuring the OP that - despite the plethora of jail-based reality shows - prisons are not necessarily places of rampant violence.
Anyway, madjack is not one who likes to brag, but I know him outside of local bulletin boards, and he has participated in prison outreach work for some time, so he knows a lot more more than most of us non-incarcerated folks about the way prisons work.
Me? I have a ne'er-do-well relative who has spent more time in jail than out in his four-plus decades of living, and I visited this person a number of times at a variety of incarceration settings. Agreed with the above posters about depositing money in a jail account: they can only use this for stuff at the commissary, and the prices on items like snacks and personal care items are reasonable (slightly higher than retail, but not gouging the inmates).
Putting money on their jail account will make their time a whole lot easier. Phone calls to the outside are not free; inmates either call collect or must use a phone card.
Then there's the food rules. Imagine a nice, warmhearted little old granny who has baked her son a couple dozen brownies that she'd like to give him along with a Bible and a short stack of hymnals - he's organizing a ministry for the poor unfortunates, you see. The poor lost lambs in jail, who all want to be choirboys when they grow up.
Eat just one brownie and in 30 minutes you'll be having a meaningful telepathic conversation with the inhabitants of the planet Zg, who are advising you that your bookshelf is actually a space age doghouse. They make perfect sense once you think about it.
Years ago my Mother, "warmhearted little old granny" baked some Christmas cookies for her grandson in Lucasville which included Rum Balls. I don't know how that made it pass the smell test, but it did. She also set off the metal detector with her steel hip.