The state of Indiana has 19 prisons, from minimum to maximum security. The three main considerations in assigning an adult offender to a security level are the offense committed, the length of sentence and any prior criminal history. Inmates who comply with prison rules, complete assigned work and take part in corrective programs may progress to a prison with less restrictive security measures.
Inmates in Indiana prisons are entitled to live in humane conditions, have access to heath care and rehabilitation services and be treated with respect. Indiana has many minimum (level 1), medium (levels 2 and 3) and maximum (level 4) security prisons. Maximum security facilities have the most restrictive security measures.
Maximum Security Prisons
Indiana State Prison was built in 1860, making it the oldest of all prisons in Indiana. It is a level four maximum security facility catering to 2,434 adult male offenders with long sentences and/or individuals convicted of violent crimes.
The Indiana Women’s Prison is a maximum security facility which has the distinction of being the oldest and first adult facility for female offenders in the United States. It was established in 1872 and has an average daily population of 600.
Established in 1923 and previously known as Indiana Reformatory, Pendleton Correctional Facility is a level three maximum security adult male facility, with a minimum-security dormitory adjacent to the main facility and an average daily population of 1,791.
The two other maximum security prisons in Indiana are the Wabash Valley Correctional Facility and the Miami Correctional Facility.
Medium Security Prisons
Rockville Correctional Facility, set across 52 acres, was originally a radar base for the U.S. Air Force in the early 1950s, and became a juvenile male facility in 1970. After housing young juveniles, older juveniles and adolescent males and adult females at the same time, it eventually became a facility for adult females alone in 1992.
Westville Correctional Facility began as state-run mental health facility Beatty Memorial Hospital in 1949, named in honor of Dr. Norman Beatty, an Indianapolis doctor who dedicated his career to mental health services. In 1974, Indiana prisoners filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court, forcing the state to reduce overcrowding in its prisons. This led to the transfer of Beatty Memorial Hospital to the Department of Correction. In 1979, 1,200 offenders were transferred to the Westville Correctional Facility. Following expansion in 1991, it now houses a daily average of 3,261 offenders.
The Putnamville Correctional Facility, originally known as the Indiana State Farm, started as a minimum security work camp in 1915 and was spread across 3,500 acres. In 1977, the facility was reclassified from minimum to medium security and began receiving convicted felons. In 2009, 917 acres were allocated to the Department of Natural Resource. Putnamville Correctional Facility has received several environmental awards, including the 2010 Organization of the Year by the Hoosier Environmental Council for Green Initiatives and the 2011 Secretary of Defense Freedom Award and Above and Beyond Award in support of the National Guard and Reserves.
Other medium security prisons in Indiana are:
- Heritage Trail Correctional Facility
- Plainfield Correctional Facility
- Correctional Industrial Facility
- New Castle Correctional Facility
- Branchville Correctional Facility
Minimum Security Prisons
Indiana's minimum security prisons are:
- Madison Correctional Facility
- South Bend Community Re-Entry Center
- Edinburgh Correctional Facility
- Chain O'Lakes Correctional Facility
Edinburgh Correctional Facility was established in 1991 and houses 320 adult male offenders. It has approximately 44 work crews supporting Camp Atterbury and other community and state agencies.
South Bend Community Re-Entry Center is Indiana's oldest existing state work release program. Work release program offenders leave the facility for outside employment but return nightly. Established in 1975, South Bend Community Re-Entry Center houses selected offenders within 12 months of their release under a community-based work release program, to prepare them for their transition back into society.
Indiana also has two intake facilities, which receive newly committed adult offenders. During the intake process, each offender is evaluated through interviews, reports and diagnostics tests. This forms the basis of the offenders' facility and program assignment. Rockville Correctional Facility is the intake facility for female offenders, while Reception Diagnostic Center houses male offenders.