big sandy united states penitentiary

Exploring Big Sandy United States Penitentiary: A Comprehensive Guide

In the heart of Inez, Kentucky, nestled within Martin County, lies the Big Sandy United States Penitentiary (Big Sandy USP). This high-security prison facility is a formidable establishment, housing a significant number of male offenders within its walls. In this comprehensive article, we’ll delve into the details of Big Sandy USP, its facilities, programs, and visitor information.

Introduction to Big Sandy USP

Big Sandy United States Penitentiary, often referred to as Big Sandy USP, is a critical component of the federal prison system. Located on a sprawling 306-acre plot, it serves as a home for 1,322 male offenders. Among these, 1,253 inmates are housed within the main USP facility, while an additional 69 inmates reside in the minimum-security satellite camp.

Facility Overview

The security measures at Big Sandy USP are stringent, ensuring the safety of both staff and inmates. The secure area, encompassing 26 acres, is fortified with perimeter fences topped with razor wire. It also boasts multiple large armed observation towers, roving patrols, and state-of-the-art electronic detection systems.

See also  Coleman II United States Penitentiary

The Satellite Camp

In contrast to the main unit’s high-security setting, the satellite camp operates as a minimum-security facility. It accommodates up to 128 offenders, who play a vital role as a labor force for the USP.

Inmate Programs and Education

Drug Abuse Treatment Program (DAP)

One of the significant rehabilitation efforts at Big Sandy USP is the Drug Abuse Treatment Program (DAP). This program offers both residential and non-residential treatment to inmates struggling with substance abuse issues.

Educational Opportunities

Inmates at Big Sandy have access to a range of educational opportunities, including:

  1. Parenting Classes: These classes help incarcerated parents develop essential parenting skills, fostering better relationships with their children.
  2. Adult Continuing Education (ACE) Classes: Inmates can further their education through ACE classes, allowing them to acquire new skills and knowledge.
  3. General Equivalency Diploma (GED) Courses: The GED program offers inmates a chance to earn their high school equivalency diploma, enhancing their prospects upon release.

Vocational Training

Big Sandy USP also offers vocational training programs that equip inmates with practical skills for reintegration into society. These programs include training in data entry, receptionist roles, and major appliance repair.

Visiting Big Sandy USP

For loved ones and friends of inmates at Big Sandy USP, visiting hours are as follows:

  • Days: Saturdays, Sundays, and Federal Holidays.
  • Hours: 8:30 am to 3:00 pm.
  • Processing Cutoff: Visitors will not be processed into visitation after 2:00 pm.
  • Count Period: Processing stops between 9:30 am and 10:00 am.
  • Special Housing Unit Visits: Inmates in the Special Housing Unit have visits on Fridays, unless a holiday falls on a Friday, in which case visiting is held on Thursday.
  • Number of Visitors: Inmates in the main unit and camp are allowed up to 5 visitors per visit. Split visits, if granted, may permit up to ten visitors, but only five at a time (split visits must be approved first).
  • Approved Visitation List: All visitors must be on the inmate’s approved visitation list.
See also  Butner Federal Medical Center

Contact Information

For inquiries or contact with the institution, here is the relevant information:

  • Physical Address: USP Big Sandy, 1197 Airport Road, Inez, KY 41224
  • Telephone: (606)-433-2400
  • Inmate Mailing Address: Inmate Name, Register Number, USP Big Sandy, U.S. Penitentiary, P.O. Box 2068, Inez, KY 41224

For those mailing inmates located at the camp, please use the following address:

  • Inmate Name, ID Number, USP Big Sandy, U.S. Penitentiary, Satellite Camp, P.O. Box 2068, Inez, KY 41224


Big Sandy United States Penitentiary stands as a significant institution within the federal prison system, providing both security and opportunities for rehabilitation and education. It plays a crucial role in the correctional system, aiming to help inmates reintegrate into society successfully.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Can I visit an inmate at Big Sandy USP without prior approval?

No, all visitors must be on the inmate’s approved visitation list. Ensure you are on the list before planning a visit.

2. What types of vocational training are offered at Big Sandy USP?

Inmates can receive vocational training in data entry, receptionist roles, and major appliance repair.

3. Are there any restrictions on the items I can bring when visiting an inmate?

Yes, there are strict guidelines regarding what you can and cannot bring during visits. It’s best to check with the institution before your visit.

4. How can I contact an inmate at the satellite camp?

When mailing an inmate at the camp, use the provided address format with the inmate’s name and ID number.

5. Are there any special rules for visiting inmates in the Special Housing Unit?

Yes, inmates in the Special Housing Unit have specific visitation days. Please check with the institution for the latest information on visitation schedules.

See also  Adams County Correctional Institution

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