General Question

girlofscience's avatar

How do you visit someone in jail?

Asked by girlofscience (7553points) January 1st, 2012
12 responses
“Great Question” (1points)

Bernie Madoff is in a jail very close to my house! If I went to the jail, could I meet him? How are allowed jail visitations determined? Would they notify him he had a random visitor, and he would need to decide if he wanted to see me?

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linguaphile's avatar

You’ll probably have to call the prison to find out what their visitor’s policy is, which varies from jail to jail and often special prisoners have their own visitation rules. You’ll also have to show ID and state your reason for visiting.

Eureka's avatar

Chances are highly unlikely you could visit him. Prisoners are only allowed X number of visits in a time period, and for a high profile con like him, you would need to pass a screening process before a visit was approved. Then, he could refuse to see you, even if you were able to prove a valid reason for wanting to visit him.

You need to give up this idea of dropping by to see old Bernie.

zenvelo's avatar

The inmate does not have to see anyone that comes to visit, not even family.

Other than relatives and legal, visitors require the approval of the head jailer/warden.

elbanditoroso's avatar

It depends on the jail. If the person is an a US prison (as opposed to a state or local) then the rules and regs are posted online at the prison’s web site. They are fairly strict.

State and local prisons are hit and miss – some states make it easy to visit and some do not. You need to check on your local facility.

But underlying all of this is that you have to have some connection with the prisoners. You can’t just drop in on Bernie and drop off a bagel – he has to OK your visit and there has to be some connection between the two of you.

So start by writing him a letter and see where it goes,

Response moderated (Unhelpful)
jrpowell's avatar

I had to be approved to visit my mom. You couldn’t just walk in. It is actually a pain in the ass to visit someone in prison. It took a few months to work out all the paperwork.

jazmina88's avatar

You have to be approved and schedule a time. However, Bernie would have the final say and you probably wouldnt make it. Good thought.

bkcunningham's avatar

From the Bureau of Prisons, Federal Correctional Institution I, Butner, North Carolina:

New inmates are asked to submit a visiting list which will be given to their Counselor for approval. Members of the immediate family (wife, children, parents, brothers, sisters), will ordinarily be placed on the approved visiting list automatically. A common-law spouse will usually be treated as an immediate family member if the common-law relationship has previously been established in a state in which recognizes such a status.

Other relations and friends may be approved after certain checks are made. Requests for approval for these additional visitors should be made to the Counselor or Case Manager at least 3 weeks in advance of the intended visit.

mollypop51797's avatar

As everyone else has said already… I think it would be a little challenging trying to get in there… but just wondering, what were you exactly planning on telling Bernie Madoff?

bob_'s avatar

In addition to the link provided by @bkcunningham, you can see the Bureau of Prisons general visiting regulations here.

Why would you want to see Bernie, though?

marinelife's avatar

You would need to get on his approved visitors list.

Linda_Owl's avatar

You can write a letter to the individual you are interested in visiting. In the letter you can explain why you would like to see him. If he decides to see you, he can add you to his Visitors List & then you might be able to actually see him. However, unless you have a very good reason for wanting to see him, I seriously doubt that he will put your name on his list. Inmates have very little control over their lives when they are incarcerated & they guard what little control they do have.

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