The Hawthorne Jail and Police Department

∗A resource guide providing inmate, bail and visiting information for the Hawthorne Jail and Police Department

The Hawthorne Jail and Police Department can hold up to 30 inmates at one time.  If you are arrested by the Hawthorne Police Department, you will be taken to the Hawthorne Jail.  This facility only temporarily houses inmates until they

  • are released on their own recognizance (known as an "O.R." release),
  • post bail, or
  • are taken to court for their arraignment.

The Hawthorne Jail and Police Department

When an inmate cannot post bail or must be returned to jail following his/her arraignment, he/she will be transferred to a different facility...typically a Los Angeles County jail.  The most common facilities for male defendants include Van Nuys Jail, the Los Angeles Twin Towers Jail and the L.A. Men's Central Jail.  Female inmates are transferred to the Century Regional Detention Facility.

In this article, our Los Angeles criminal defense attorneys1 will explain the following:

1. Procedures on How to Post Bail for an Inmate at the Hawthorne Jail

1.1. Cash bail

1.2. Cashier's check

1.3. Bail bonds

2. How to Get Inmate Information
3. How to Contact an Inmate at the
Hawthorne Jail
4. Visiting Hours and Policies
5. Return of Property
6. The Hawthorne Jail
"Work Release" Program

If, after reading this article, you would like more information, we invite you to contact us at Shouse Law Group.

1. Procedures on How to Post Bail for an Inmate at the Hawthorne Jail

"Bail" is the amount of money that is designed to reasonably assure the arresting law enforcement agency and court that an inmate will make his/her court appearances after being released from jail.  The amount of bail is predetermined based on the crime(s) for which the inmate was arrested.  Bail for inmates at the Hawthorne jail is governed by the Los Angeles County Bail Schedule.

Once an inmate is booked into the jail and his/her bail is set, a friend or family member may pay (or "post") bail 24 hours a day / 7 days a week at the Hawthorne Police Station which houses the jail.  The address is 12501 South Hawthorne Blvd., Hawthorne, CA 90250.  Their telephone number is (310) 217-9632

The Hawthorne jail accepts three forms of bail: cash bail, cashier's checks and bail bonds (all of which are discussed in greater detail in our article "How to Post Bail in California".

1.1. Cash bail

When you post cash bail, you must pay the entire bail amount.  Because this is a very costly option, many people opt, instead to post a bail bond (described below).  If you post cash bail and the inmate attends all of his/her court appearances, the bail will be returned to you at the conclusion of the criminal case.  If the defendant does not make all of his/her court appearances, that money is forfeited to the court.

1.2. Cashier's check

Similar to cash bail, if you opt to use a cashier's check, you must post the entire bail amount.  Cashier's checks must be California bank-drawn checks and made payable to the City of Gardena.  This method of bail can be paid directly to the jail 24 hours a day / 7 days a week.

Cashier's checks must list the booking number and full legal name of the inmate.

1.3. Bail bonds

Because most people don't have the means to post cash bail, bail bonds are quite common.  When you use a bail bond, you enter a contract with a bail bondsman (otherwise known as a bail agent).  You pay a maximum 10% of the bail, and the agent pays the rest.

The catch is that the 10% is a nonrefundable fee.  This means that if the inmate makes all of his/her court appearances, you will not pay any more money, but you will not get that 10% back.  And if the inmate skips town and doesn't appear as expected, you may be liable for repaying the bondsman in full.

Bail bondsmen advertise via the Internet and in the phone book.  Just make sure you ask to see the agent's business license and retain copies of all documents for your records.

Whether you elect to post cash bail or a bail bond, inmates at the Hawthorne jail are typically released in a very short period of time...in as little as 15 minutes.

*NOTE:  Once you post bail, you should immediately contact an experienced Los Angeles criminal defense lawyer who can schedule a bail hearing to argue that the bail should be reduced or eliminated.   A skilled local attorney can also evaluate the case to help develop the most comprehensive defense to help your loved one fight his/her case.

2. How to Get Information about an Inmate at the Hawthorne Jail

If you wish to obtain information about an inmate whom you believe is at the Hawthorne Jail, you can call the jail directly at (310) 349-2730.  You can also visit the Los Angeles Sheriff Department's inmate information website if you wish to obtain information via the Internet.

In order to obtain information on an inmate, you must provide the inmate's correct full legal name and either his/her date of birth or his/her booking number.

If you need more information after pursuing these options, you may also want to call the Hawthorne Police Department directly at (310) 349-2700.

Typically, inmates who are being held in custody must be arraigned within two (2) days of being arrested.  At that point, the judge will either continue the arraignment or will set the case for a pre-trial hearing.  If you wish to look up the case information for an inmate being housed at the Hawthorne Jail, visit the Los Angeles County case information website.

3. How to Contact an Inmate at the Hawthorne Jail

Inmates at the Hawthorne Jail are allowed to make one free phone call to whomever they wish once they are admitted into the facility.  After that, all calls must be collect.  If you know you have a loved one in jail, make sure to contact your local telephone carrier to make sure that your ability to receive collect calls isn't blocked.

Unfortunately, inmates are not allowed to receive incoming calls.

And while inmates at the Hawthorne Jail are not there long enough to receive mail, you may personally visit an inmate at this facility as long as you comply with the visiting hours and policies described below.

4. Visiting Hours and Policies

You may visit an inmate at the Hawthorne Jail for 15 minutes from 7:00pm to 8:00pm seven (7) days a week.  Inmates are only allowed one visit per day by one adult and up to two children.  Free parking is provided on-site.

Visitors are not allowed to bring anything to the inmates...anything of necessity will be provided by the jail, and nothing else is permitted.

Attorneys and clergy members are not restricted by visiting hours and may have access to inmates whenever they wish, as long as a deputy is available to accommodate the request.          All visitors must bring valid picture identification including

  • a California driver's license or identification card,
  • a U.S. Passport,
  • an alien registration card, or
  • a U.S. military card.

***And lastly, a word of caution - anyone who has an outstanding warrant or is on probation or parole will not be allowed to visit an inmate and may be arrested on site.  The same goes for an inmate who brings any illegal items into the facility.

5. Return of Property

Once an inmate is booked into the Hawthorne Jail, a deputy collects and stores all of his/her belongings.  Ordinarily this property is returned when the inmate is released.  However, if you visit an inmate...and the inmate would like you to take his/her property home...you may collect those belongings at that time.

In order to collect the property, the inmate must simply sign a release form at the time of your visit.

6. The Hawthorne Jail "Work Release" Program

One of the programs provided by the Hawthorne Jail is its "work release" program.  This program is available to all eligible defendants who pay a one-time $25 application fee.  Work release allows inmates to serve their jail time performing community service at the jail facility in lieu of incarceration.

Typically, this program is restricted to defendants who have been convicted of non-violent misdemeanors as well as infractions when the defendant can't afford to pay the fine.

For more information on the work release program, you can contact the Hawthorne Jail directly at (310) 349-2730.

Call us for help...
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If you or loved one is charged with a crime and you are looking to hire an attorney for representation, we invite you to contact us at Shouse Law Group. We can provide a free consultation in office or by phone. We have local offices in Los Angeles, the San Fernando Valley, Pasadena, Long Beach, Orange County, Ventura, San Bernardino, Rancho Cucamonga, Riverside, San Diego, Sacramento, Oakland, San Francisco, San Jose and throughout California.


1 Our Los Angeles criminal defense attorneys have local law offices in Beverly Hills, Burbank, Glendale, Lancaster, Long Beach, Los Angeles, Pasadena, Pomona, Torrance, Van Nuys, West Covina, and Whittier.

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