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Visiting an Inmate in the Houston City Central Jail in Texas

Visitation can be important to a family and to an inmate / prisoner. Regardless of how long the duration of an incarceration, most inmates enjoy seeing their family or loved ones. Visitation can be an enjoyable time, but everyone must be sure to follow the rules. The rules at Houston City Central are pretty flexible and very reasonable, but they are in place for good reasons and should be followed at all times.

Remember you are visiting a jail. Rules and regulations are setup for reasons of safety and security. These guidelines help protect the inmates, staff, and visitors of Houston City Central Jail so please be sure you or anyone visiting your loved one knows the importance of obeying them.

How do you go about visiting an inmate housed in Houston City Central Jail?

Here are a few basic guidelines on how it works. After this we will go into a general dress code considered appropriate for jail visitation. Dressing appropriately can also help to avoid problems when you visit someone in jail.

Visitation at Houston City Central jail is allowed 24 hours a day 7 days a week with a few exceptions. You cannot visit during:

  • Court times
  • Meal times
  • Prisoner on work assignment

Other than these stipulations you can visit any time. This extremely flexible visitation opportunity allows you ample options to see your loved one while they are incarcerated. In order to see them you will need to go through a few steps.

  • First be sure you know which jail they are in (locate the inmate)
  • Have the inmate's information with you
    • Arrest number
    • Full name
    • Date of birth
  • Go to the jail
    • If they are available, you will be allowed to visit.

Specific Jail Visitation Rules:

  • You must have a valid ID to visit
  • Visitors must be adult (over 21 years of age)
  • Visitors with warrants will be arrested.
  • If inmate has had a fight, altercation, or domestic violence incident previously with the visitor, no visit will be allowed.

General Dress Code Recommendations:

Any time you visit a jail it is advisable to dress modestly. Your clothing should generally be simple and plain without words, pictures, etc. No type of gang related emblems or symbols should be worn.

Don't wear revealing, nude, see through, or extremely short clothing. If you wear shorts or skirts and have them at least mid-thigh, it is best. This helps avoid problems related to exposure.

It is also generally a good idea not to try to take anything into jail. If you feel you must take something to the inmate, you should call the jail first to see if that is allowed. Most of the time it is not.

RELATED: Houston City Central Jail Inmate Search

RELATED: Houston City Central Jail Inmate Services


writes about inmates, jails, prisons, courts and the lives of people who live and work within the United States Criminal Justice System. His mission can be summed up in a single word; transparency.

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How to use the Inmate Search for Houston City Central Jail in Texas

When you first try to figure out how to find someone in a jail system, it can be quite complicated and confusing. If you've never done something like this, you might even experience a little bit of fear. Don't worry, that's understandable. We are here to help.

[Article_Ad_2]We'll first go over how to locate an inmate that's entered into the system. Waiting is one of the hardest parts. Because it takes a few hours to get a new inmate processed and into the system, you may not be able to find them immediately. If that happens, first try to be patient and wait a couple of more hours.

But first, let's assume the person you are looking for has been processed and their information is available. Now we'll proceed on walking through the process of locating them.
Click here to make sure you are on our Houston City Central Jail front page. Near the top left of the page you should see heading in red color that says INMATE SEARCH. This is where we will begin. There are several links underneath this heading that will help us to search in a variety of ways.

  • Harris County Jail Inmate List
  • Harris County Jail Inmate Search
  • County Inmates – mobile
  • Recent Arrests – Harris County
  • Recent Releases – Harris County
  • Arrest Warrants – Harris County
  • VINELINK – Inmate Search

First off, we'll address the Arrest Warrants and VINELINK. These are more specialized links for specific areas of interest, not really just searching for an inmate. The arrest warrant link is exactly that. You will be taken to a page to fill out information and can proceed from there or call the information numbers on that page, if you need further assistance.
VINELINK is a national victim's assistance network. When you click here you will be taken to a different information page and given phone numbers that can assist someone in locating an offender.

If you happen to be searching for someone arrested within the last 24 hours, you can click the Recent Arrests link and you will have to look through the list of recent arrests.
Now, to go over the rest of the links: Inmate List, Inmate Search, County mobile, and recent releases. When you click on these links you will be taken to another data entry page where you can enter information about the person you are looking for. You can enter their first and last name, birthdate, SPN or booking number, SSN or social security number.
The more of the information you can provide the faster you will find the person you are looking for. You must provide a certain level of information to proceed. Last name and / or social security number are generally the most important pieces of data to get you going.

Once you enter whatever data you have available, just click on the submit button and you will be taken to a list of inmate's names that matches the criteria you have entered. You can search through the list and find the person you are looking for.

Now suppose you need to post bond for your inmate. How do you do that?

How to Post Bond for someone at Houston City Central Jail

How you go about posting a bond will depend on whether the judge says the inmate will require a cash bond, surety bond, or a personal bond. Though all of these serve the same result in allowing an inmate free on some type of security or their own personal assurances, they have different requirements.

The first step in posting a bond is to find out how much it is and what type it is. You can call the Houston Help Line at 713-837-0311 to talk to a representative there and find out how much the inmate owes for fines and/or find out how much their bond is.

One of the next things you may want to know is where to pay a bond. You can pay a bond at the courthouse 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and even on holidays. Here is where you would need to go:

  • Herbert W. Gee Municipal Courthouse

1400 Lubbock Street (1st floor, Jail Bonding Window)
Houston, TX 77002

Cash bonds must be paid in full in cash at the courthouse. If the inmate does not show for their next scheduled appearance, the cash is forfeited in full. If they are found not guilty or have the charges dismissed, you will get a full refund.

If the judge requests a surety bond, you will need to contact a bonding agent / company to get assistance. They will charge a fee to put up a bond guaranteeing the inmate / defendant will be there for their next court appearance. The city has no connection to any of the bonding companies.

Some defendants can be released on personal bonds. If requested, the judge will decide if the defendant is trustworthy enough based on the charges, their community presence, and information regarding whether they have ever failed to appear in court. The judge is the only one who can grant a personal recognizance bond.

That's pretty much it for posting a bond for an inmate in Houston City Central Jail. If you have any other questions, remember to call the phone number above.

RELATED: Houston City Central Jail Inmate Search

RELATED: Houston City Central Jail Inmate Services


writes about inmates, jails, prisons, courts and the lives of people who live and work within the United States Criminal Justice System. His mission can be summed up in a single word; transparency.

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Communicating with an Inmate Housed at the Houston City Central Jail in Texas

It's understandable that you would want to be in contact with a loved one who has been incarcerated at the Houston City Central Jail. Having contact with someone is important even in times like this. Family, friends, and loved ones can help to make a huge difference in the life of a prisoner or inmate. So keeping in contact the best way you can is important.

At Houston City Central you can visit the inmate frequently as long as their visitation privileges or yours is not revoked for some reason. We cover visitation separately to make sure you know the ins and outs of the visitation process.

You can also maintain contact with inmate in Houston City Central Jail via telephone.

There are phones available for the prisoners to use, but as with anything there are guidelines and some restrictions. The phones aren't like normal telephones where someone can pick them up and just easily dial another number.

Whether the prisoner is trying to call a land line or a cell phone the phones in Houston City Central Jail act differently. If a prisoner calls a land line (this is a phone hooked up at someone's home – not a cell phone), the call automatically acts like a collect call. Fees are charged for all collect calls by the phone service provider.

In order for a prisoner to call a cell phone, there must be an account set up first. You can set up an account with Global Tel Link at www.GTL.net. This company services the phones in many jails throughout the nation. You simply go online and set up a prepaid account where you deposit funds. GTL charges a fee to manage the account, but the incarcerated individual will be able to call cell phones using this method.

If you have any questions about GTL or can't understand something, you can call them at 866-230-7761. The GTL representatives will be happy to help you with establishing an account or with any questions you may have.

Other forms of contact at Houston City Central Jail

There is no email contact for prisoners incarcerated at this facility. For questions and specific instructions on how to mail something to an individual you should contact the jail directly.  General jail mail rules are that only plain white envelopes with letters are allowed. Most jails will not allow any writing on the outside of the envelope except the required address (full name, inmate number, housing area, and cell number) and your full return address.

You can contact the jail at 713-247-5400.

RELATED: Houston City Central Jail Inmate Search

RELATED: Houston City Central Jail Inmate Services


writes about inmates, jails, prisons, courts and the lives of people who live and work within the United States Criminal Justice System. His mission can be summed up in a single word; transparency.

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