Updated January 21, 2020
The Elmwood Correctional Complex (ECC), under the jurisdiction of the Santa Clara County Department of Corrections (DOC,) includes two jail facilities: the Elmwood Men’s Facility, and Elmwood Complex Women’s Facility, both in Milpitas, CA. This complex houses detainees awaiting arraignment and those who have been sentenced for California misdemeanor and/or felony crimes.
Elmwood is among the largest correctional complexes in the United States. The Elmwood Men’s Jail can hold approximately 2,600 inmates in minimum to medium security accommodations. The Elmwood Women’s Jail houses up to 600 inmates of all security levels. Maximum-security male offenders are transferred to the Santa Clara County Main Jail in nearby San Jose.
Located about 6-7 miles north of downtown San Jose, the Elmwood Correctional Complex address is:
701 S. Abel Street
Milpitas, CA 95035
The phone number for inmate and general information: (408) 299-2305
ECC Administration: (408) 957-5300
Below, our California criminal defense lawyers provide detailed information pertaining to policies at the Elmwood Correctional Complex. For the benefit of current detainees and their loved ones, topics covered include:
- 1. How do I search for an inmate in Santa Clara County?
- 2. How do I post bail at the Elmwood Jail?
- 3. Can I call an inmate?
- 4. How do I put money on an inmate’s account?
- 5. What are the visiting hours and policies?
- 6. Can inmates send and receive mail?
- 7. What is life like at the Elmwood Correctional Complex?
- 8. Is there a work release option?
- 9. Legal Defense Help
1. How do I search for an inmate in Santa Clara County?
You can access inmate information online via the Santa Clara County DOC “Find Inmate” search engine. You must input a name and birthdate or name and booking date to retrieve detailed information about your friend/loved one’s custody status. You can also call the ECC booking information phone line: (408) 299-2305 to speak to a staff member and obtain information. For future convenience, be sure to obtain the inmate’s booking (CEN) number and personal file number (PFN).
Typically, inmates in custody are arraigned within a few (business) days after their booking date. At that point, the judge may continue the arraignment or set the case for a pre-trial hearing.
2. How do I post bail at the Elmwood Jail?
Most detainees will have an opportunity to post bail and obtain temporary freedom from incarceration. Your loved one’s bail information may be available online or can be obtained by calling the booking line.
You can post bail for an ECC inmate with the help of a fee-based bail bondsman or pay bail at the San Jose Main Jail, located at 150 West Hedding Street. Bail is accepted daily between the hours of 5:00 a.m. and Midnight, and can be paid in exact cash or via cashier’s check or money order (made out to Santa Clara County Judicial District.)
3. Can I call an inmate?
Inmates at the Elmwood Detention Center are not allowed to receive incoming personal phone calls. Your friend/loved one will be permitted a few initial free calls at booking, and thereafter can make collect calls while in the jail’s common areas.
Santa Clara County has contracted with Global Tel* Link for inmate phone services. You can set up a “advance pay” phone account online or by calling (800) 483-8314. To set up and fund your phone account, you will need to provide the inmate’s booking number.
Please be aware: all inmate phone calls are subject to monitoring and recording. It is in the best interest of your friend or loved one to avoid discussing pending criminal charges.
4. How do I put money on an inmate’s account?
While food and basic toiletries are provided to inmates at the Milpitas Jail, most welcome the opportunity to purchase comfort items for weekly commissary delivery. Available products include snacks/treats, hygiene items, and stationary/postage-paid envelopes.
Family/friends can contribute to commissary by making deposits into the inmate trust account, which is started initially with money confiscated at booking. You can provide commissary for an Elmwood Correctional inmate in a few ways:
- In-person – The jail lobby kiosk machines are available 24 hours a day and accept cash, credit and debit cards.
- Online – Go to the touchpayonline.com website to make inmate commissary account deposits.
- By phone — Call (866) 232-1899 to make a cash account deposit anytime. You will need the facility code number, which is 295110, as well as the inmate’s booking (CEN) number.
- By mail – You can mail in a cashier’s check or money order payable to Santa Clara County Department of Correction. Include the inmate’s name and personal file number (PFN) on the check. There is a $300 maximum by mail.
- Care Package Order – You can also select gift packs from icaregifts.com. There is a weekly maximum spending limit of $100.00
5. What are the visiting hours and policies?
Prior to having a first visit with an inmate at the ECC , you must register online, completing the “Visitor Registration Form.” Allow three to four business days before scheduling a visit. Thereafter, you can use the website to schedule an inmate visit (at least 24 hours in advance and up to 21 days ahead.) You can speak to someone about visitation and/or schedule a visit by phone at this number: (408) 957-5900, which is answered weekdays from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
You can also fill print out the Visitor Registration Form and mail it into the facility as shown:
Department of Correction Elmwood Complex
Attn: Visiting Office
701 South Abel Street
Milpitas, CA 95035
All inmates are entitled to two 30-minute visits per week (the week starting Sunday). There is a one visit per day maximum and a maximum of two adults per visit (plus children). Plan to arrive 45 minutes ahead of your pre-scheduled visit.
Visiting hours at the Elmwood Men’s Correctional Facility are as follows:
- Monday through Thursday evenings from 7:00 through 10: 30 p.m.
- Fridays from 8:00 to 10:30 p.m.
- Weekend hours are for “Minimum Camp” residents only, and are from 8:00 to 10:30 a.m. and from 1:00 to 4:30 p.m.
Female inmate visitation takes place every day and evening of the week, with days and hours designated by the housing unit. The ECC visiting schedule is posted online, or call (408) 957-5900 for information.
The Elmwood Jail has several rules for visitation. If any rule is violated, visitation privileges may be denied.
- Valid government issued photo ID is required for entry. Appropriate identification includes a driver’s license, passport, state ID card or military ID.
- Minor children (17 and under) must arrive in the company of a parent or legal guardian and must bring an original or notarized copy of their birth certificate.
- Minors must not be left unattended any time/anywhere on the premises.
- With the exception of identification, one key, and one baby bottle for an infant, leave personal property at home or locked in your car. This means no purses, wallets, backpacks, cell phones, etc.
- You will need to pass through a metal detector. Verification is required for internal medical hardware/devices.
There is also a strictly enforced dress code for visitors to the Milpitas Detention Center. Shoes and shirts are always required. Offensive or gang-related tattoos that are visible will prevent visitation.
Do not wear:
- Clothes revealing the torso/back, shoulders or abdominal area such as tank tops, spaghetti straps, crop tops, etc.
- Sheer, see-through materials
- Exposed undergarments or unfastened buttons/zippers
- Shorts/skirts/dresses with hemlines shorter than two inches above the knee
- Attire displaying obscenities or offensive language/graphics
- Clothes resembling inmate uniforms or law enforcement attire
- Military patterns
- Medical clothing (“scrubs”)
- Hats of any type
Important to note: All visits at the jail or through your computer are monitored and recorded. Be careful to avoid incriminating conversations pertaining to criminal acts or charges.
6. Can inmates send and receive mail?
Mail to inmates at the Elmwood Correctional Facility can be delivered by the U.S. Postal Service only (no Fed Ex or UPS deliveries accepted). Mail must be addressed as follows:
Santa Clara County Department of Corrections
Inmates name, booking number, PFN
701 South Abel St.
Milpitas, CA 95035
All personal mail will be inspected for contraband. The following items may not be sent to Elmwood inmates through the mail:
- Packages, padded envelopes or Priority Mail
- Plastics, cardboard, laminated items
- Greeting cards larger than 5″x7″ or double-ply cards
- Staples, paper clips, glitter, stickers, tape
- Blank stationary/stamps
- Artwork done with wax, water colors, heavy crayon, markers or felt tip pens
- Enhancements with lipstick, whiteout or other staining material
- Photos larger than 4″x6″, Polaroid pictures
- Any items that depict gang-related activities or that are sexual in nature,
- Drugs or other illegal items
- Food or drinks
You may send an inmate a newspaper, softbound book or magazine as long as they arrive directly from the publisher (not a bookstore).
7. What is life like at the Elmwood Correctional Complex?
An assessment and medical screening is conducted during intake. The Elmwood Correctional Complex provides onsite medical care and mental health counseling for inmates, as well as emergency dental treatment. Prescription medication is dispensed, if needed, and over-the-counter meds are available for purchase. Information is provided online for those who may have concerns about an inmate’s medical/mental health status.
A variety of programs and services are offered at the detention centers, including:
- Religious services
- Drug and/or alcohol counseling and meetings
- Anger management, trauma, nutrition, and parenting classes
- Vocational and computer classes, ESL and literacy classes, and classes geared toward earning a (“G.E.D”) or high school diploma
A “Jail Industries” program allows inmates to work and learn a trade while incarcerated. There is also a Santa Clara County “Weekend Work Program,” which allows low-risk offenders to serve their sentences by performing community labor. Participants are carefully screened and must apply for acceptance, as well as pay a fee to participate. For information, see Weekend Work Program Rules.
In keeping with the Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA), Santa Clara County has pledged a “zero tolerance” policy for sexual misconduct. Information is provided online to facilitate reporting of allegations of sexual assault, sexual harassment, or any type of sexual misconduct at Elmwood Detention Center.
8. Is there a work release option?
If the inmate desires, he/she can choose to release confiscated property to a friend or family member. A property release authorization must be completed in this case, and all property must be released at one time. (Note: clothing is not released until discharge.)
To pick up inmate property, you must present government issued I.D. Note: inmates being transferred to state prison must make arrangements to have property released within 180 days or it will be destroyed.
9. Legal Defense Help
An experienced criminal defense lawyer can help you or your loved one beat the charges or avoid harsh penalties. The California Legal Defense Group had been instrumental in helping many people maintain their freedom and clean record. For a free consultation after a California arrest, please call 24/7, or contact us online.