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Merced County Jail

2584 W Sandy Mush Rd
Merced, California 95340
(209) 385-7575

Interview with Tim

JM: How long was your sentencing for?
Tim: 9 months in the county jail.

JM: Did you spend time in a holding cell after your sentencing? If so, what was that like? If you didn't where did they they take you instead?
Tim: I got released the same day I got sentenced.

Nobody ever wants to go to jail but if you know somebody going to Merced County Jail at least find out what they can expect by reading real interviews from people who have actually served time in MCJ.

If you know somebody going to jail in Merced it is helpful to know that there are two facilities - the Main Jail Facility (700 W. 22'nd St.) and the John Latorraca Correctional Facility (2584 W. Sandy Mush Rd.). Obviously if you are going to visit somebody in jail you need to know which facility they are in so you don't end up having to drive to the other place (and possibly miss your visiting time).

Getting along with other inmates
The first question people who are heading to jail usually have is how hard it is to get along with other inmates. Fortunately gang problems don't seem quite as rampant in Merced County Jail as they are in other jails across the state (particularly in Southern California). If you are going to jail for the first time you should keep to yourself while you learn the ropes, but you should quickly pick up on how the social dynamic works behind bars. You'll learn who you can and can't talk to. Just remember to always treat fellow inmates and the deputies with respect.

MCJ is much more accommodating than most jails when it comes to your neighbors and cellmates. Ex-inmates report that if they requested a different cell mate the guards would usually let you do it. If you are having problems with a particular inmate you should be able to find a way to stay away from them. You want to avoid fighting at all costs - it can make the difference in how long you stay behind bars.

Time off for good behavior
By default you will serve 2/3 of your sentence in Merced County Jail. This means that on a one year sentence you should only serve 8 months. Getting in fights with other inmates or smuggling drugs into jail, however, can risk you losing this time off.

Learn more about the jail
The links to the left (from Presentencing on) link to interviews from ex-inmates of the jail. Go ahead and browse the site. If you have questions that aren't answered there is a comment form at the bottom of each page that will allow you to ask questions that are often answered by people who have either been in jail themselves or know somebody who has.

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