View Full Version : Visiting list approval

08-13-2002, 03:13 AM
Sorry to post this in the emergency forum but I'm a bit in a hurry....

Would like to "surprise visit" my fiancé next week and he has been transferred to another prison lately so I'm not sure if he already has got his visiting list approved.

I know that his lawyer was able to see him last Tuesday so I wondered if that would be the same visiting list or a different one?
I contacted her and asked, but she was not sure and told me to call the "electric eye" at the prison and to ask if I'm approved. Never heard that term before, so now I'm still wondering... Might the "electric eye" be similar to that place called "clinical services"? I called his counselor there last night but was told the she cannot check up if I'm approved because I am not a family member. She also told me that he just handed in his list yesterday for approval and his lawyer told me that this isn't true.

I need to book the flight asap but it doesn't make any sense if I cannot see him at all.

Any suggestions?


08-13-2002, 07:38 AM

This is what I hate!! You call down there to see if your visitation was approved & they won't tell you anything. Really I think the only thing you can do is possibly wait for a letter from him saying you are approved. If I remember correctly you had stated your fiance was in a IL prison. I believe it shouldn't take that long to get approved.

You know...try calling back there & asking his counselor if you can arrange a special visit. I see that you are from Germany & I would think you could have a special visit since you are coming from such a long way. Maybe that might do something to speed things along so you can visit him.

I hope I helped you & bit & my idea will work for you. I know how it is when you are missing your loved 1 & really wanting to see them. It's even more frustrating when you WANT to make plans & things don't work out...been there done that!

Send me an e-mail or PM if you would like any kind of help on this, ok?

take care!

08-13-2002, 08:35 AM
Hell yeah, that damned counselor told me first, he handed in the list just the same day, -not true-
then told me I don't have to be re-approved because I was on the list before at the former prison, -not true-
no special visits because of the distance - f§$&&%§&
unable to check the list - hell, sounds reasonable...

Maybe that sounds tough but I think his counselor is stupid like ... :D

I called the gatehouse and they connected me to the same counselor again.

I am so angry I could cry.


08-13-2002, 08:42 AM
Brena...I am soo sorry to hear that you are coming up against a brick wall!!

Do you & your fiance write 1 another? If you do, try to get a quick letter out to him like today letting him know that he needs to tell you if you were approved on his visitation list or not. In IL it takes about a week for me to be approved, I don't know if there might be more involved w/you being in Germany, I wouldn't think so though.

Oh & another thing you are right in saying that even though your fiance was transfered his visitation list has to be reapproved at the new 1.

take care!

08-13-2002, 08:46 AM
Thank you DJ, it feels good to know someone cares :)

Yes, we do write... On 6th August he wrote about the conditions at the visiting room and: "it might be better and you are approved on the list" ...

Might be a matter of language and he already told me that I'm approved on the list...

How do you intereprete that?

Thanks :)

08-13-2002, 08:54 AM
Sounds to me like you are approved on his list girl! Since he said that in the letter he should know. I believe after they put the list in the guys get something back stating that anybody put on their list was approved. That's how my fiancee knew I was approved for visits & even for he to call.

I would make sure before you make any travel plans to call down there to make sure the prison is not on lock down or he may be in segregation. You are traveling from a REALLY long way & it would be terrible if something came up like lock down or he in seg. to prevent the visit.


08-13-2002, 09:09 AM
good luck with all this, brena! i am not familiar with illinois facilities, but sounds like dj is really helping! hope your visit is a wonderful one.

08-13-2002, 09:23 AM
DJ, that would be so great if true! What he wrote "might be" confused me totally ;-)

Anyway, I called the "Electric Eye" - whatever it is - some minutes ago and they also told me they would give me no information but the counselor which I won't do again.

Then I called the prison chaplain and he says he'll try to find out what's up with that counselor and I should call him in the afternoon again :) In the end I'm becoming religous?!? :D He also told me that the prison is not on lockdown nor is he in Seg.

Thanks for your suggestions and help!

Aprilcat - thanks for your wishes and I have to agree - DJ is very helpful!!!


08-13-2002, 09:52 AM
Aww...blushing over here ladies!!

I have had to have the "crash course" of trying to see my man & having to call all the time to make sure they are not on lock down, etc.. You should see my phone bill from calling down to my fiancee's prison...geez!!

Darn...I didn't think of the chaplain...opps missed that 1! I think it's because I had a not so nice run in w/the chaplain where my man is at.

Keep us & me posted on if the chaplain can find anything out for you.

take care!

08-13-2002, 01:31 PM
Ok... so I am a little late to join in on this one... (sorry, I was actually at work doing some work!!) :D

Brena... the "electric eye" refers simply to the gatehouse... I hadn't heard that term used til I visited Menard CC in Chester, IL.... They have the computer where they sign in visitors, check visitor's lists, etc....

If you call and you can't get answers, another option is always to ask to speak to the duty warden.... you may have to be insistant, but if you just let whoever answers the phone KNOW that you have made many many calls and are calling from a distance and that you NEED to speak to someone who can give you answers....
Also... make sure you ask to WHOM you are speaking... I know that CO's who answer the phone (particularly here in IL) are infamous for just transferring you all over the place or "accidentally" disconnecting you, and then catch an attitude when you call back, but I have found that I get a much better response when they know I am keeping track of how many times I have called and just who it is I have spoken to and what that person has told me....
There is always a duty warden..... it may be the warden, an assistant warden or another white shirt....
You can try moving up the ranks too... ask to speak to a Lt. or Captain also......
It shouldn't be THAT damn difficult for them to give you an answer... and trust me... it is not as difficult a process as they make it seem to get approved.... I have seen people at a max joint in IL get approved as a visitor just showing up on Saturday morning, if they are persistent enough and get the attention of a person who can actually help them.....
Keep trying....

08-13-2002, 02:36 PM
Thank you for your suggestions too, jdswifey!

I was so lucky that the Chaplain did that for me :D He talked to someone in the Ass. Wardens office who called the misterious "Electric Eye". So now I know I am approved and listed as fianceé - the way it should be actually.

I also did what you suggested - I wrote down every name and time when I tried to get an answer but maybe I'm showing too much respect or shyness. Perhaps it's again the language issue or I am just not smart enough to point out my position. I got the feeling that it should not be too difficult for them but they just didn't want to.

The staff in Pontiac was much more helpful - it was no problem to get information about being on the list or not. But the Reverend in Menard is very much supporting and seems to be a nice guy. He said he will come over to the visiting room next week to see me in person :)

Now I'm so excited too see my love soon! Guess I cannot sleep this night :fb:

Thanks again!


08-13-2002, 02:54 PM
Oh Brena...I am SOO happy that you are going to see your guy & you found out you are approved!!

1 thing to always remember...don't let them intimidate you when you call down to the prison again. Once they know you are a little shy they will tell you whatever they want to tell you. I learned that because when I would call for my guy there were times I was TOO NICE & I got nowhere. Now I figure out WHO to talk to or what dept., as soon as someone in the front office picks up I say what I gotta say, get transfered & say what I gotta say to the next person. It's been working so who knows!

When are you going to see your fiancee!! Remember you better post how your visit went girl!!

take care

08-13-2002, 08:35 PM

08-14-2002, 02:28 PM
Well, the flight is booked for Sunday, 18. and return on 25. :D

He doesn't know about it and I asked the chaplain not to tell him - I guess he will be shocked when they call him for the visit on Monday morning .. hehe :D

Just SO happy now :)


08-14-2002, 02:41 PM
OOH Brena that is SOO good to hear girl!
Let me tell you I speak from experience...the SURPRISE visit is the best!! My guy...the look on his face when he saw me sitting there...if I live to be 100 I will NEVER forget it!

Good luck & be careful traveling ok? Do you have anybody that you know around there or any hotels to check out & book? Do you know about the visitation policies in Menard? I could look them up for you & send you the info. if you don't.

Any kind of help you need feel free to e-mail me or pm me & I will do what I can to help you out!

take care!

08-16-2002, 12:16 PM
Just one more day.... until I'll leave :)

Got a letter today - he is still doing that countdown to October - poor guy , he has no idea :p I'm looking forward to see his face with the expression of unbelieving on Monday morning ...

Well, as for the preparations I will be off now until returned home in 9 days...

Thanks again!