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Mecklenburg County Jail

801 E 4th St
Charlotte, NC 28202
(704) 336-8100

Interview with Mary, D Bo, Joel and Trevor

JM: How long was your sentencing for?
Mary: My sentence was for 3 months in jail, 36 months probation afterwards.
D Bo: I don't know the DA said that he wasn't ready for trial.
Joel: I was sentenced to 35-42 months in the North Carolina Department of Corrections
Trevor: 18. months suspended, 25 days in 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?
Mary: Yes. It was boring. It took a while to get me moved and I had to keep coming in and out of my cell a few times because I was being asked tons of questions, being booked, being photographed, fingerprinted, etc...
Joel: Yes I did spend some time in a holding cell because I had to be transferred back to the county jail where I was still in custody. It was horrible. All I could do was think about how my actions lead me to that point.
Trevor: No, I was able to serve my time at my and my probation officer's discretion. After I was sentenced I was simply free to leave the court house and return home.

Life On the Inside
An inmate who is incarcerated at the Mecklenburg County Jail spend their time staring at the walls of their cell and count down the minutes until their release or they could enter into one of the many programs set up to improve their life.

As the mission statement of the Sheriff's office states "The goal of Inmate Programs is to provide the inmates housed in the Mecklenburg County Sheriff's Office detention facilities the opportunity to address those issues that may have contributed to their criminal behavior and subsequent incarceration." This means if they can better themselves on the inside maybe they won't be coming back.

Passing the Time in Mecklenburg County Jail
Among the programs offered for inmates are vocational training classes such as Simple Machines, Blueprint Reading and Basic Electricity. These classes are designed to provide inmates with the requisite job skills needed to find placement upon release. There is also GED and other educational counseling classes offered to inmates.

Even with all that assistance, inmates can still find themselves getting into hot water. One former inmate found that the best advice for getting along is to "keep your mouth shut." This might prove to be the biggest challenge while on the inside!

If food is a priority there is a weekly commissary available for inmates to order up snacks and other items.

Good Behavior Policy
Time off for good behavior means just that. If an inmate stays out of trouble and does what they are told to do they can have a reduction off their sentence. The maximum amount of time an inmate can earn at Mecklenburg would be six days for every 30 served.

Visit and Telephone Policy
Visits at Mecklenburg County Jail are one per week for 30 minutes. Within those 30 minutes an inmate can see up to 2 people at once. Those visitors have to present a valid form of picture ID to the guards upon arrival for the scheduled visit. It's up to the inmate to let their potential visitors know when the schedules time is.

Inmates can make outgoing collect calls from the phones in their housing units. There is a charge of around $7 for each call just to make the connection and then regular collect call charges would apply.

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