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Colorado Prison & Jail – Visitation, Phones, Packages & Mail Information relating to the Colorado Department of Corrections. This includes info about Visitation, Phones, Packages & Mail.

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  #1  
Old 09-29-2019, 02:18 PM
hopefuldad hopefuldad is offline
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Default I'm new to this and very lost today

Hi , thank you guys for being here. It is already helping. My 20 yr old son is in county waiting to be sentenced to a very serious violent crime. He hasnt been in trouble before and him going to prison scares me bad so I can only imagine how he is feeling. I'm trying to get as much info together for him on what it will be like, starting with how drdc will be. Anything you guys can tell me will be very helpful. Thank you all.

Last edited by hopefuldad; 09-29-2019 at 02:30 PM..
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Old 09-29-2019, 04:23 PM
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Can't say much about the Colorado prison system, I've never done time there, but regarding the rest of it......TAKE IT ONE DAY AT A TIME, hopefuldad. In the best of times and/or the worst of times WALK BESIDE HIM, not behind him or in front of him. My father went to prison here in Texas in the mid 1940s. When I started bouncing in and out of prison in early 1990s he was always there for me in his own way. He knew that he couldn't save me, but always let me know that he never would forget me. He'd come visit once a month no matter what. Whether I had money or not, he'd put $20 on my books. He wasn't much of a writer, but still, I'd hear from him on holidays and birthdays and if or when something of importance came up.
He knew just as I came to know and of which you will know that THEY HAVE TO DO THE TIME AND LET MATTERS TAKE THEIR COURSE. You can become as stressed out and unhappy as you allow yourself to be or you can take it one day at time knowing that one day inside or completed is one day less to do. After so many months or years it'll be time to come home. If he's got more on his plate than freedom will allow for and he winds up in there for life......you still take it one day at a time. In reality, that's all we really have. He's fortunate to have a father who cares enough to consider all of this. There are many who have parents that don't care. There are others who don't know who their father is. So, he's blessed to have you.
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Old 09-29-2019, 06:53 PM
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Thank you for the good advise. It means more to me than words could express. God bless us all.
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Old 09-29-2019, 07:40 PM
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Thank you for the good advise. It means more to me than words could express. God bless us all.
Yes, my brother....God bless us all. We need each other in this life.....inspite of ourselves and what transpires...people need each other. It's a lonely path to travel with that.
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Old 09-30-2019, 08:34 PM
saoirse1 saoirse1 is offline
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Hopeful Dad. I have been in your shoes. It is so scary and stressful. My first piece of advice is to breathe. I was terrified. My advice for your son is to go in and get a lay of the land. Don't believe it when some tell you that he has to go in and prove he is tough by picking fights. He needs to be respectful and keep to himself. No gangs - he doesn't need them to be safe. Him behaving respectfully will matter more than anything. No gambling EVER and don't borrow anything for any reason. He never wants to be in debt to anyone. It is not as bad as we imagine but it is hard but he can be okay. It is a life we never dreamed of but it is doable. We have a lot of years to go so my loved one keeps his eye on the prize- every day of good time matters. He needs to keep his temper in check but that doesn't mean that he needs to be pushed around. The COs sometimes treat them with disrespect and it is hard not to pop off to them He needs to get a job right away. Staying busy really helps. When he first goes in write him frequently. It means the world to them when it is time for mail and they have been remembered. I hope this has helped you and if you have any questions- please ask.
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Old 09-30-2019, 09:50 PM
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Hopeful Dad- DRDC is very hard time. It gets better and easier once they are at their permanent facility.

They came and took my loved one in the middle of the night. He was given a heads up and he wrote a quick note to be mailed so we weren't too shocked. I think it took a couple of days before it showed he was at DRDC. I believe that DOC updates the inmate locator every night.Before that the inmate locator showed jail backlog.
They are locked down 23/7. 10 years ago one of the better things was that they had light switches in the cells, it was the 1st time in a year he could shut off the light and was able to sleep in the dark.
Be expecting a bit of fear and the unknown while he is being processed through DRDC. He will make it through there but it will be probably be a couple of weeks before you hear from him. They call it acclimating them Write to him often as he will get your letters while he is there. Letters are VERY important. You can send him letters through jpay. He will get them quicker. Put money on his books now if you can as it will transfer with him. I put money on the day I knew they took him so he would have it there for when he could order canteen.
Just remember at DRDC they are trying to condition them to prison life so they don't get the regular communication like when they are at their permanent facility. It took almost 10 days to two weeks before we heard from him. The communication gets better I promise.
It is really hard on everyone involved. It was a little over two weeks until he was able to get out of his cell soon enough to get in line to make a call. His unit was the last out for his first two weeks and he could not get to a phone in the short amount of time that he was allowed out. After two weeks his unit moved up and he was let out earlier than some others and he made a bee line to the phones to let us know he was okay. Everyone on here warned me about not hearing from him for a while. But as the time drags on with no contact the harder it gets. It is natural to be scared and confused during this time. DOC considers it acclimation. To us and the ones in there it is just pure hell. DRDC is really hard time. Write to him as he will get your letters. You will probably not get any that he writes while he is there until after he has been moved. It does get easier once they are in their permanent facility.
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  #7  
Old 10-03-2019, 07:12 PM
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Originally Posted by saoirse1 View Post
Hopeful Dad. I have been in your shoes. It is so scary and stressful. My first piece of advice is to breathe. I was terrified. My advice for your son is to go in and get a lay of the land. Don't believe it when some tell you that he has to go in and prove he is tough by picking fights. He needs to be respectful and keep to himself. No gangs - he doesn't need them to be safe. Him behaving respectfully will matter more than anything. No gambling EVER and don't borrow anything for any reason. He never wants to be in debt to anyone. It is not as bad as we imagine but it is hard but he can be okay. It is a life we never dreamed of but it is doable. We have a lot of years to go so my loved one keeps his eye on the prize- every day of good time matters. He needs to keep his temper in check but that doesn't mean that he needs to be pushed around. The COs sometimes treat them with disrespect and it is hard not to pop off to them He needs to get a job right away. Staying busy really helps. When he first goes in write him frequently. It means the world to them when it is time for mail and they have been remembered. I hope this has helped you and if you have any questions- please ask.
Thank you very much, I will read this to him next vist. He is already been attending bible study and church and a college program and more in the 6 months he has been in county. He keeps to himself except for the few he has met that dont cause trouble. His current cellmate keeps telling him he will have to join a gang or be killed. He is smart enough to know not to listen to everyone. I'm rambling now , I get so worked up thinking about it. Thank you so much for your message
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Old 10-03-2019, 07:22 PM
hopefuldad hopefuldad is offline
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Originally Posted by saoirse1 View Post
Hopeful Dad- DRDC is very hard time. It gets better and easier once they are at their permanent facility.

They came and took my loved one in the middle of the night. He was given a heads up and he wrote a quick note to be mailed so we weren't too shocked. I think it took a couple of days before it showed he was at DRDC. I believe that DOC updates the inmate locator every night.Before that the inmate locator showed jail backlog.
They are locked down 23/7. 10 years ago one of the better things was that they had light switches in the cells, it was the 1st time in a year he could shut off the light and was able to sleep in the dark.
Be expecting a bit of fear and the unknown while he is being processed through DRDC. He will make it through there but it will be probably be a couple of weeks before you hear from him. They call it acclimating them Write to him often as he will get your letters while he is there. Letters are VERY important. You can send him letters through jpay. He will get them quicker. Put money on his books now if you can as it will transfer with him. I put money on the day I knew they took him so he would have it there for when he could order canteen.
Just remember at DRDC they are trying to condition them to prison life so they don't get the regular communication like when they are at their permanent facility. It took almost 10 days to two weeks before we heard from him. The communication gets better I promise.
It is really hard on everyone involved. It was a little over two weeks until he was able to get out of his cell soon enough to get in line to make a call. His unit was the last out for his first two weeks and he could not get to a phone in the short amount of time that he was allowed out. After two weeks his unit moved up and he was let out earlier than some others and he made a bee line to the phones to let us know he was okay. Everyone on here warned me about not hearing from him for a while. But as the time drags on with no contact the harder it gets. It is natural to be scared and confused during this time. DOC considers it acclimation. To us and the ones in there it is just pure hell. DRDC is really hard time. Write to him as he will get your letters. You will probably not get any that he writes while he is there until after he has been moved. It does get easier once they are in their permanent facility.
Thank you for the good advice. I am going to relay all the information back to him so he has a bit of insight. I found the drdc orientation book on here I'm sending him too. His arraignment is next month so we still have a little time to prepare. The not knowing what the sentence will be is painful. I want it to hurry up but I dont also. The da is wanting life right now but we are hoping and praying for a miracle. Thank you again, I dont feel so alone with you guys here
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Old 10-04-2019, 09:59 AM
saoirse1 saoirse1 is offline
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Thank you very much, I will read this to him next vist. He is already been attending bible study and church and a college program and more in the 6 months he has been in county. He keeps to himself except for the few he has met that dont cause trouble. His current cellmate keeps telling him he will have to join a gang or be killed. He is smart enough to know not to listen to everyone. I'm rambling now , I get so worked up thinking about it. Thank you so much for your message
Please reiterate to him that he absolutely does not need to join a gang to be safe. They will approach him but a very respectful no will be accepted. Gang life is no good and one can never leave it once affiliated. Also let him know that the time is easier once he is actually is in his permanent DOC facility than it is in County. I know it was great during our 1st visit. We could hug for the time in over a year!

Also let him know that not everyone or everything someone says in there can be taken at face value. Some of the inmates are great at manipulation of the ones that are brand new to the system.

Hang in there.
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Old 10-09-2019, 11:20 PM
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IfDRDC is anything like Illinois classification time, it is the absolute worst part of the journey. I don’t say that to scare you but rather to prepare you. You’ll have minimal communication. My boyfriend was on classification for over 40 days. I wrote a letter every day and sent books via amazon as much as possible. Check Colorado’s rules on that but I expect it’s much of the same. There’sa limit to how many books per shipment and should be paper back. Magazines are acceptable as well depending on the content. Phone calls during this time were once a week for 15 mins. Every state is different but that gives you an idea. I’m so sorry you’re going through this but having your support during these horrible moments will keep him going. Stay strong for him and you can have our shoulders to cry on. We’ve all been there. Also in Illinois we try not to send money until they’ve been at their “home” prison for 24 hours so it doesn’t get sent to the wrong prison and takes longer to get to him. DRDC will be a stark contrast to county where movement and phone calls are frequent.
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Old Yesterday, 04:57 PM
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My loved one has been to a few different facilities in Colorado. I would also add to make sure that you set up a jpay account right away when he gets sent so you can email him and put money on his books for his necessary items like soap and deodorant and such. If he gets even a couple years I would send him money for a tv, because depending on his crime and what kind of points he gets, he might get sent to a medium or closed facility, which means more time in his cell. Having a tv keeps them SANE! They cost around $200 or more. Also set up your gtl phone account and put money on the phone so he can call you once your number gets approved. I agree with the other people, it's best that he not ask to borrow anything, having any kind of debt in there is a bad thing, and I dont say this to scare you, but someone in the cell next to my loved one got beat to death because of a $75 poker debt. Stay positive and calm and put on a brave face for him as much as you can.
If you have questions, ask us, or you can even call the facility and try to ask them once he gets sent. It can be rough, hopefully he gets sent to a decent facility.
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