Prison Wiki

Stateville Correctional Center

Stateville Correctional Center Prison Wiki

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Stateville Correctional Center, located in Crest Hill, Illinois, is one of the state’s most prominent prison facilities. With a rich history and commitment to maintaining safety and order while offering rehabilitation programs, Stateville stands as a testament to the complexities of the penal system. This guide is designed to provide insights into its operations, services, and policies, ensuring that individuals, whether they are visitors, family members, or professionals, have all the necessary information at their fingertips.

Facility Details

Location and Contact Information

Stateville Correctional Center
16830 S. Broadway St.
Crest Hill, IL 60403
Phone: (815) 727-3607

Security Level and Inmate Population

Stateville is a maximum-security facility, housing some of Illinois’ most high-profile inmates. The population fluctuates but generally hovers around several thousand inmates at any given time.

Facility History and Mission

Opened in 1925, Stateville Correctional Center is designed as a panopticon, a unique architecture intended to allow a single watchman to observe all inmates without them knowing whether they are being watched. Its mission, however, extends beyond mere surveillance. Stateville strives to provide an environment that is safe and secure, where inmates have opportunities for rehabilitation and personal growth.

The story of Stateville Correctional Center begins in the early 20th century. Constructed between 1916 and 1925, the facility was envisioned as a modern marvel for its time. The architects drew inspiration from the “panopticon” design, a concept that was thought to be revolutionary. The design’s central idea was to allow a single guard to observe all inmates without them knowing they were being watched. This concept, credited to the British philosopher and social theorist Jeremy Bentham, was rooted in the idea of continuous surveillance as a means of control and reform.

However, as times changed, so did societal understanding and attitudes towards incarceration. The rigid principles of the panopticon gave way to a more human-centric approach to correction. The belief in rehabilitation over punishment started to gain traction, and with it, the mission of Stateville began to evolve. While the physical structure largely remained the same, the ethos guiding the facility underwent a transformation.

Stateville Correctional Center’s mission, over the decades, has been to ensure public safety while promoting a constructive reentry into society for its inmates. This shift in focus has seen the facility invest significantly in educational and vocational training programs, aiming to equip its residents with skills and knowledge that can aid their transition post-release. These efforts reflect the broader belief that prisons should serve not just as places of detention but as centers of reform.

Furthermore, Stateville has always been at the forefront of championing inmates’ mental and emotional well-being. Acknowledging the strains of incarceration, the facility has worked diligently to provide its inmates with therapeutic programs, recreational activities, and spiritual support, all aimed at nurturing a holistic sense of well-being.

The history of Stateville Correctional Center is more than just brick and mortar. It’s a tale of evolving societal beliefs, challenges, and an undying commitment to human reform. The facility, through its changing mission over the years, stands as a beacon of hope for many and serves as a reminder that redemption and change are always possible. As we look towards the future, Stateville continues to play a crucial role in shaping the narrative around corrections and rehabilitation in Illinois and beyond.

Visiting the Facility

Visitation Hours and Guidelines

Visitors are only granted access if they’re included in the inmate’s approved visitor list. It’s up to the inmate to organize these visits and inform their potential visitors about their status in the visitation list. To confirm your inclusion in an inmate’s visitation list, it’s advisable to write to the inmate directly. The facility’s staff at IDOC will not provide this information if contacted over the phone.

When making your inaugural visit to the facility, all adult visitors (those 18 years and above) must fill out a Prospective Visitor’s Interview (PVI) form, also referred to as DOC 0148. This form can be filled out in advance and brought along during the initial visit.

The facility promotes visitations as they play an essential role in helping inmates stay connected with their loved ones and the broader community. All visitors, upon arrival, will undergo a mandatory body search at the Visitor Center. Any visitor found to be intoxicated or under the influence of drugs or alcohol will be denied entry.

Courtesy and cooperation with the IDOC staff are paramount. Visitors should always heed staff instructions, maintain a quiet demeanor to respect other visitors and the facility’s staff.

Required Documentation for Visitors

All visitors must present a valid photo ID (such as a driver’s license or passport) upon arrival. Minors must be accompanied by an adult and have a birth certificate as proof of age.

Special Accommodations for Visitors with Disabilities

Stateville Correctional Center complies with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). For visitors with disabilities, ramps, accessible restrooms, and other necessary accommodations are available. Notify the facility in advance if you require specific assistance.

Inmate Communication

Telephone, Email, and Postal Mail Policies

Inmates can make collect calls to approved numbers during specific hours. Stateville uses a specific system for electronic messaging, akin to email. Physical letters can be sent via postal mail but may be subject to inspection for contraband or inappropriate content.

Approved Methods for Sending and Receiving Messages

For security reasons, certain messaging platforms are approved. Ensure that you’re using the recommended platforms, which can be confirmed by contacting the facility directly.

Restrictions on Content and Materials

All communications are subject to review. Messages promoting violence, illegal activities, or any form of disruption are prohibited. In addition, explicit photos, metal objects, or any potential contraband are strictly disallowed.

Sending Money to Inmates

Inmates can receive funds through several methods, including GTL (ConnectNetwork), JPAY, Western Union, and money orders. If you choose to send a money order, ensure it’s addressed to the lockbox directly, not to the facility. Detailed guidance on money orders is provided below.

You can send up to $5,000 to inmates using GTL (ConnectNetwork), JPAY, and Western Union. However, if you opt for MoneyGram, the limit is set at $3,000. Here’s how you can transfer funds using these services:

  • GTL (ConnectNetwork): Access the service by visiting ConnectNetwork for Illinois Department of Corrections
  • JPAY: Use their platform at
  • MoneyGram: Utilize the Blue MoneyGram Express Payment Form. Remember to use the receiving code 7364.
  • Western Union: Funds can be transferred online through or in-person at various locations using the Quick Collect Form. Use the code “ILDOC IL” for city and state.


When making an electronic transfer, it’s essential to provide the inmate’s IDOC number and their last name. Transfers made via GTL, JPAY, and Western Union are typically reflected in the inmate’s account within 24-48 business hours. However, MoneyGram transfers might take 72 to 96 business hours.

Money Orders:

Money orders sent to inmates should not exceed $999.99. Accompany the money order with a lockbox deposit slip, ensuring it contains the inmate’s name, their IDOC number, and the sender’s details (name and address).

To get a deposit slip, visit JPay Money Order Deposit Slip. Ensure the money order is payable to ‘JPay’ and mailed to:

JPay, PO Box 260250, Hollywood, FL 33026.

Inmate Programs and Services

Rehabilitation is a cornerstone of modern corrections, and the Stateville Correctional Center in Illinois, like many facilities across the nation, places a significant emphasis on education and vocational training. By offering these opportunities, the Center hopes to equip its inmates with the skills and knowledge they need to reintegrate into society successfully and reduce the risk of recidivism.

Educational Programs

Stateville Correctional Center provides inmates with access to a range of educational programs tailored to their needs and educational backgrounds. These offerings cater to various levels of academic proficiency:

  • Basic Adult Education: This program assists inmates who may have missed out on foundational education. It covers fundamental literacy and numeracy skills, ensuring that every inmate can read, write, and perform basic arithmetic.
  • High School Equivalency (HSE) Preparation: For inmates who didn’t complete high school, Stateville offers classes to prepare them for the HSE exam, formerly known as the GED. Passing the HSE is equivalent to earning a high school diploma and can significantly expand an inmate’s post-release employment opportunities.
  • Post-secondary Education: In collaboration with local community colleges and universities, inmates have the opportunity to enroll in courses that can lead to advanced degrees or certifications. These courses not only provide academic knowledge but also foster critical thinking and analytical skills.

Vocational Training

Beyond traditional education, the facility recognizes the importance of practical, hands-on skills. Vocational training at Stateville Correctional Center is designed to prepare inmates for employment in various trades and industries:

  • Carpentry and Woodwork: Inmates learn the art of woodworking, from basic crafting to advanced carpentry techniques. This skill can lead to employment in construction, furniture making, and other related industries.
  • Automotive Repair: This program covers the basics of car maintenance and repair, offering inmates the chance to become certified mechanics.
  • Culinary Arts: This popular program teaches inmates about food preparation, cooking, and kitchen management. Graduates can pursue careers in restaurants, catering, and other food services upon release.
  • Computer Literacy and IT: As the world becomes increasingly digital, IT skills are more valuable than ever. Inmates are introduced to basic computer literacy, with advanced courses available in software usage, coding, and even IT support.
  • Agriculture and Horticulture: Here, inmates gain hands-on experience in farming, gardening, and landscaping. This program not only provides vocational skills but also therapeutic benefits, connecting inmates with nature.


By investing in education and vocational training, Stateville Correctional Center aids in transforming lives. The acquired skills and knowledge not only enhance inmates’ self-worth and confidence but also improve their chances of finding stable employment upon release. This, in turn, benefits society at large, as inmates are less likely to return to criminal behavior and more likely to contribute positively to their communities.

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Treatment

Substance abuse and mental health challenges are prevalent among incarcerated populations, and Stateville Correctional Center recognizes the importance of addressing these issues holistically. In response, the facility offers dedicated programs aimed at the rehabilitation and wellbeing of its inmates, ensuring a comprehensive approach to these often intertwined challenges.

Substance Abuse Treatment

Substance abuse treatment at Stateville Correctional Center typically encompasses both educational and therapeutic components:

  1. Educational Component: Inmates are taught about the physiological and psychological effects of drugs and alcohol, the repercussions of substance abuse on personal health, relationships, and society, as well as the potential legal consequences.
  2. Therapeutic Component: This focuses on personal growth, understanding the root causes of addiction, and developing coping mechanisms. Group therapy sessions, individual counseling, and even peer-led initiatives offer inmates a safe space to discuss their struggles, share experiences, and learn from each other.
  3. Recovery Support: Beyond the initial treatment phases, inmates are provided with tools and resources to maintain sobriety. This might include access to 12-step programs, alumni groups, or other supportive communities that continue to nurture their journey towards a drug-free life.

Mental Health Treatment

Mental health concerns can range from mild and transient stress-related symptoms to more severe and chronic conditions like schizophrenia or major depressive disorder. At Stateville Correctional Center:

  1. Assessment: All inmates undergo a comprehensive mental health assessment upon intake. This ensures that those with pre-existing conditions or those displaying symptoms get immediate attention.
  2. Individualized Treatment Plans: Based on assessments, inmates receive individualized treatment plans. These plans might include psychotherapy, group therapy, medication management, or a combination of treatments.
  3. Continuous Monitoring: Mental health professionals continuously monitor inmates’ progress. This allows adjustments to be made to their treatment plans, ensuring they receive optimal care throughout their incarceration.
  4. Crisis Intervention: For inmates experiencing acute mental health crises, the facility is equipped to provide immediate support. This can involve isolation from potential triggers, one-on-one counseling, or, in extreme cases, medical intervention.
  5. Reintegration Support: Recognizing that transitioning back to society can be a trigger for many, Stateville offers support for inmates nearing release. This includes connecting them with community mental health resources, ensuring a continuity of care as they reintegrate.


The interrelationship between substance abuse and mental health can’t be overstated. Often, individuals use substances as a way to cope with undiagnosed or untreated mental health issues. By offering integrated care that addresses both substance abuse and mental health concerns, Stateville Correctional Center aims to break the cycle of addiction and mental health decline, focusing on holistic rehabilitation and eventual reintegration into society.

Religious Services and Spiritual Support

Navigating the challenges of prison life can be difficult, but many inmates find solace and strength through religious services and spiritual support. Stateville Correctional Center acknowledges the importance of spiritual well-being and offers a range of services and support to cater to the diverse religious and spiritual needs of inmates.

Diverse Worship Opportunities

At Stateville Correctional Center, religious freedom is valued, and inmates have the right to practice their faith, provided it doesn’t compromise security. The facility offers worship services for various religious denominations. From Christian services like Catholic Mass and Protestant worship, to Islamic Jumu’ah prayers, and even spaces for Buddhist meditation and Jewish Shabbat, inmates have the opportunity to engage in religious rituals that resonate with their personal beliefs.

Chaplains and Spiritual Advisors

Stateville Correctional Center is staffed with chaplains from various religious backgrounds. These spiritual leaders not only oversee the religious services but also provide one-on-one spiritual counseling for inmates seeking guidance, comfort, or a listening ear. Whether an inmate is facing personal struggles, ethical dilemmas, or simply needs someone to talk to, chaplains are there to offer support.

Additionally, for those faiths not directly represented by the facility’s chaplains, outside spiritual advisors can be brought in upon request, ensuring that every inmate’s spiritual needs are met.

Religious Study and Reflection

Beyond the worship services, inmates have access to religious study groups and resources. Bible study groups, Quranic study circles, and other faith-based discussion groups are facilitated, allowing inmates to delve deeper into their scriptures and teachings. The facility’s library also stocks religious texts from various faiths, enabling personal reflection and study.

Special Religious Diets and Festivals

Recognizing the religious dietary restrictions of various faiths, Stateville Correctional Center often accommodates special dietary needs, be it halal, kosher, or vegetarian meals. Furthermore, the facility acknowledges religious holidays and festivals. Special arrangements are made for celebrations like Eid, Passover, or Easter, ensuring inmates can observe their faith’s significant days even while incarcerated.

Holistic Spiritual Well-being

In addition to structured religious services, the facility offers programs that cater to broader spiritual well-being. Meditation sessions, yoga classes, and mindfulness workshops are available for those seeking a spiritual connection outside of traditional religious frameworks.

Inmate Rights and Grievance Procedures

Overview of Inmate Rights

In the United States, incarcerated individuals maintain a set of rights, even while they are serving their sentences in correctional facilities such as Stateville Correctional Center in Illinois. These rights are grounded in the Constitution, case law, and specific statutes that are designed to ensure inmates are treated with dignity and respect.

One of the fundamental principles is that inmates have the right to be free from “cruel and unusual punishments,” as mandated by the Eighth Amendment. This encompasses protection from torture or excessively harsh treatment. It also includes the right to receive medical care. Prisons and jails are required to provide inmates with access to adequate medical attention, ensuring their health and well-being while incarcerated.

The First Amendment guarantees inmates the right to freedom of speech and religion. While this freedom is limited in the context of prison for security reasons, it doesn’t negate their right to express themselves or practice their religion. Prisons should accommodate these religious practices as long as they don’t pose a security risk. This might include providing specific diets, allowing religious gatherings, or giving access to religious texts.

In addition to these rights, inmates also maintain the right to not be subjected to racial segregation unless it’s necessary for safety. The landmark case of Johnson v. California emphasized that racial segregation should be the exception, not the rule in prisons. Similarly, inmates have a right to be free from sexual crimes, with the Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) setting standards to protect inmates from sexual assault and harassment.

Legal rights are also crucial for inmates. They retain the right to access the courts and have the right to legal representation. If an inmate feels that their rights are being violated, they have the right to file a grievance or a lawsuit. Correspondingly, they also have the right to be free from retaliation for making such complaints.

Lastly, while prison officials have broad discretion in maintaining security and order, they must always exercise their authority without violating the civil rights of the inmates. Any actions taken, such as placing an inmate in solitary confinement, must be justifiable and not infringe upon the individual’s rights unduly.

How to File a Grievance or Complaint

Inmates can file grievances through a formal process, which involves filling out a specific form detailing their complaint. This form is reviewed by the facility administration, and the inmate will receive a response.

Legal Representation and Resources for Inmates

Legal libraries are available for inmate use. Additionally, inmates have the right to consult with legal counsel, and public defenders are available for those who cannot afford private representation.

Family and Friends Support Resources

Organizations and Services for Family Members

Several organizations provide support for families of incarcerated individuals. These groups offer counseling, educational resources, and advocacy.

Tips for Maintaining Healthy Relationships with Inmates

Open communication, understanding the stresses of incarceration, setting boundaries, and attending counseling can help maintain strong bonds.

Coping Strategies and Self-Care for Family Members

Support groups, therapy, and understanding the importance of self-care can assist families in navigating the challenges of having a loved one incarcerated.

Release and Reintegration

Overview of the Parole Process

Parole is a conditional release from prison before the end of one’s sentence. Inmates must apply and appear before the parole board, demonstrating their rehabilitation and readiness for release.

Reentry Programs and Resources for Released Inmates

Stateville partners with community organizations to ensure a smoother transition for released inmates. This includes housing assistance, job placement, and continued counseling.

Tips for Supporting a Loved One During Reintegration

Patience, understanding, providing a stable environment, and connecting them with community resources can be invaluable during this transition.

Visiting Hours at Stateville Correctional Center:

Maximum security inmates have visitation everyday from 7:30am-2:30pm.  You must arrive by 1pm.

Minimum Security Inmates have visitation on weekends and holidays from 8am-2pm.  You must arrive by 12:30pm.

General population and protective custody inmates can have visits one hour in duration during the week and holidays, on weekends two hour visits are permitted if space allows it.  Segregation inmates can only have visits one hour in length.

Physical Address:

Stateville Correctional Center
16830 So. Broadway St.
Joliet, IL 60434



Inmate Mailing Address:

Inmate Name, ID Number
​Stateville Correctional Center
P.O. Box 112
Joliet, IL 60434

Frequently Asked Questions for Stateville Correctional Center

Q: How do I schedule a visit to Stateville Correctional Center?
A: To schedule a visit, you typically need to contact the facility’s visitation department or check their official website for visitation scheduling details. They will provide you with essential details, including available visitation hours and any specific requirements or restrictions.

Q: What are the rules and guidelines for visitation?
A: Each correctional facility, including Stateville, has its own set of rules and guidelines for visitation. It’s crucial to familiarize yourself with these guidelines to ensure a smooth visit. Common rules might cover dress code, item restrictions, and behavior expectations during the visit.

Q: What types of identification are accepted for visitation?
A: Visitors need a valid ID to enter the facility. Commonly accepted forms include government-issued IDs, such as driver’s licenses, state identification cards, passports, or military IDs. Ensure your identification isn’t expired.

Q: Can I bring personal belongings during visitation?
A: Stateville Correctional Center has stringent rules regarding personal belongings during visits. Always consult the facility’s guidelines before visiting. Typically, items like cell phones, bags, or food are not permitted. The facility might provide lockers or storage for personal items.

Q: How can I stay in touch with my incarcerated loved one at Stateville?
A: Stateville Correctional Center offers various communication methods, such as telephone, email, and postal mail. It’s crucial to familiarize yourself with the facility’s specific communication policies, which might include restrictions on phone call frequency, email guidelines, and rules about postal mail content.

Q: How can I send money to an inmate’s account at Stateville?
A: Stateville typically has a system for depositing funds into an inmate’s account. Methods might include electronic transfers, money orders, or designated kiosks. Ensure you understand the procedures, any associated fees, and deposit limits.

Q: What programs and services does Stateville provide to inmates?
A: Stateville offers a variety of programs and services to inmates, aimed at rehabilitation and personal growth. These can encompass educational programs, vocational training, substance abuse and mental health treatment, religious services, and recreational activities. Inmates can get details from facility staff or information materials.

Q: How can I file a grievance or complaint on behalf of my loved one at Stateville?
A: If you have concerns about your loved one’s treatment or rights at Stateville, you can usually file a grievance or complaint. This often involves submitting a detailed written statement to the prison administration or the designated grievance officer. There might be a specific form or format to follow.

Q: Are there legal resources available for inmates at Stateville?
A: Stateville might have legal resources or partnerships with legal aid organizations for inmates. Inmates can inquire about available services, such as assistance with parole hearings, appeals, or accessing legal documentation, from prison staff.

Q: What support resources are available for families of inmates at Stateville?
A: There are organizations and services designed for families affected by incarceration. These can include support groups, counseling, financial aid programs, and reentry services. Researching local organizations, contacting advocacy groups, or getting referrals from prison staff can be beneficial.

Q: How does Stateville’s parole process work?
A: The parole process at Stateville involves a thorough evaluation of the inmate’s behavior, progress, and readiness for release. Inmates might be eligible for parole after serving part of their sentence and demonstrating good behavior and rehabilitation efforts. Parole boards review factors such as the nature of the crime, the inmate’s behavior, and post-release plans. If granted, the inmate will be released under specific conditions and supervision.

Q: What resources does Stateville offer to support released inmates’ reintegration?
A: Stateville might have reentry programs to assist released inmates. These can include job placement, vocational training, counseling, and housing assistance. Community-based organizations and government agencies can also offer reentry services, aiming to ease the reintegration process and reduce reoffending.

Q: How can I support my loved one during their reintegration from Stateville?
A: Assisting in the reintegration process can be pivotal. This can involve helping access reentry programs, aiding with job or housing applications, and providing emotional support. Communication, empathy, and a stable environment are invaluable.

Q: Can I visit my loved one while they are in a reentry facility or halfway house after Stateville?
A: Visitation rules can differ for reentry facilities or halfway houses. It’s recommended to contact the facility directly to understand their specific visitation guidelines.

Q: How can I care for myself when facing the challenges of having a loved one at Stateville?
A: Self-care is paramount when supporting an incarcerated loved one. Strategies might include seeking support from friends or support groups, engaging in enjoyable activities, practicing stress management techniques, and, if necessary, seeking counseling. It’s essential to recognize your emotions and seek help when needed.

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