The Whittier Jail…located within the Whittier Police Department…serves as a temporary holding facility for men and women who are arrested by the Whittier Police as well as the Santa Fe Springs Police.
Arrestees are typically only held at this facility for up to 72 hours until they
- are released on their own recognizance (known as an “O.R.” release),
- post bail, or
- are taken to court for their arraignment.
Male defendants who must remain in jail…either because they can’t post bail or because they have been convicted of their offense…will generally be transferred to a larger Los Angeles County jail such as the Los Angeles Twin Towers Jail, the Pitchess Detention Center, or the Los Angeles Men’s Central Jail. Women will be transferred to the Century Regional Detention Facility.
In this article, our Whittier criminal defense attorneys1 will explain the following:
- 1. Procedures on How to Post Bail for an Inmate at the Whittier Jail
- 2. How to Get Inmate Information
- 3. How to Contact an Inmate at the Whittier Jail
- 4. Visiting Hours and Policies
- 5. The Whittier Jail’s Procedures for the Return of Property
- 6. The Whittier Jail “Pay to Stay” Trustee Program
If, after reading this article, you would like more information, we invite you to contact us at Shouse Law Group.
After an inmate has been booked into the Whittier City Jail, his/her bail will be set according to the Los Angeles County Bail Schedule and based on the crime(s) for which the inmate was arrested.
“Bail” is the amount of money that is designed to assure the arresting agency and court that the defendant will make his/her court appearances after being released from jail. Anyone can pay (or “post”) bail on an inmate’s behalf.
If you choose to post bail for an inmate, the Whittier Jail accepts three forms of bail: cash bail, cashier’s checks and bail bonds, all of which are discussed in detail in our article “How to Post Bail in California”.
You may post bail directly at the Whittier Police Station (where the jail is located) 24 hours a day / 7 days a week.
The Jail is located at
13200 Penn Street
Whittier, CA 90602
The building is in the southwest corner of Penn Street and Washington Avenue. Free parking is available in the Station’s parking lot.
If you elect to post cash bail, you must post the full amount. Once you post cash bail, the inmate is released pending his/her arraignment. If the inmate attends his/her court appearances, the bail will be returned following the conclusion of the criminal case. If he/she does not, the defendant forfeits your money to the court.
Similar to cash bail, if you opt to use a cashier’s check, you must post the entire bail amount. The Whittier Jail only accepts certified California bank-drawn cashier’s checks that are payable to the Whittier Courthouse. Cashier’s checks should include the inmate’s full name and booking number.
And because the funds must be verified before the jail will release an inmate, the inmate’s release may take several hours or even a few days, depending on the time of day and whether the bail is posted on a weekday or a weekend.
Posting a bail bond is the most common way to bail someone out of jail. This is because you are only required to pay a maximum 10% of the total bail amount.
The downside is that bail bondsmen keep your 10% as their fee. So if the defendant makes all of his/her court appearances, you pay nothing more, but you do not get that 10% back. If the inmate doesn’t make those appearances, you will be liable for repaying the entire bail amount to the bondsman.
Bail bondsmen advertise on the Internet and in the phone book. Make sure you verify the bondsman’s license and keep copies of all documents for your records.
∗NOTE: Once you post bail, you should immediately consult with one of our experienced Whittier criminal defense lawyers who can schedule a bail hearing to argue that the bail should be reduced or eliminated. A skilled local attorney will also review the case to develop the most comprehensive legal defense to help your loved one fight his/her case.
In order to obtain information about an inmate at the Whittier Jail, you may
- call the Whittier Police Department at (562) 567-9200,
- call the L.A. Sheriff’s Department Inmate Information line at (213) 473-6080, or
- access information via the web on the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department’s inmate information website. ∗The L.A. Sheriff’s Department provides information for all inmates in Los Angeles County.
Before a deputy will release information, you must provide the inmate’s correct full legal name or his/her booking number.
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 this type of case information for an inmate being housed at the Whittier Jail, visit the Los Angeles County case information website.
Inmates at the Whittier Jail are allowed to make three (3) free local telephone calls when they arrive at the facility to arrange for bail, inform family members as to their whereabouts and contact an attorney.
Thereafter, all calls must be placed on a collect basis. If you know that a friend/family member is being held in the Whittier Jail, you may want to contact your local telephone carrier to make sure that collect calls are not blocked on your telephone plan.
Unfortunately, inmates are not allowed to receive incoming calls. And because inmates are only temporarily housed at the Whittier Jail, they are not there long enough to receive mail.
You may, however, visit an inmate at the Jail, provided that you comply with the facility’s visiting hours and policies described below.
Inmates may receive visitors once daily between the hours of 10:00am and 11:00am and from 2:00pm to 3:00pm. Visits typically only last for five (5) minutes. Up to two (2) people may visit an inmate at the same time. Appointments are not required, and visits are granted on a first-come, first-served basis.
Attorneys are not bound by these restrictions and may visit an inmate 24 hours a day / 7 days per week.
All visitors must bring valid picture identification, such as
- a California driver’s license or identification card,
- a U.S. Passport,
- an alien registration card, or
- a U.S. military card.
In addition, all visitors are subject to a search of their person and property. Visitors may not bring anything illegal to the facility nor may they bring anything to the inmates.
And the Whittier Police Department reserves the right to deny entry to anyone who poses a threat…either real or perceived…to the safety or security of the Jail staff or inmates.
When an inmate is booked into the Whittier Jail, his/her belongings are collected and stored. This property is returned to the inmate once he/she is released or transferred to a county jail.
Alternatively, an inmate may fill out a property release form designating another person to claim that property. If an inmate has chosen you to pick up his/her property, you must bring a government issued I.D. (listed above under Section 4. Visiting Hours and Policies) to the Whittier Jail lobby 24 hours a day / 7 days a week.
There is no need to arrange this release ahead of time. However, you may have to wait if the Jail staff is busy tending to other matters.
∗A final note – If an inmate is transferred to an L.A. County Jail, he/she will be housed in a more permanent location where he/she will likely be able to
- place phone calls with a pre-paid calling card or pre-paid credit account,
- send and receive mail, and
- purchase items from a jail commissary, provided that you wish to help fund an “in-house” account (a process known as putting money “on the books”).
If and when your loved one is transferred, we are available to provide you with more detailed inmate information with respect to the specific facility in which he/she has been housed.
In addition to providing temporary housing to inmates awaiting their arraignment, the Whittier City Jail offers a “pay to stay” trustee program for men and women.
This program allows eligible defendants who have been convicted of nonviolent misdemeanor charges the opportunity to “serve their time” by working in this city jail in lieu of being incarcerated in a county jail.
Workers pay $80 to work an eight (8) hour shift that gives them one (1) day of credit towards their sentence. They do this until they complete their sentence. This means that, for example, an individual who opts for…and qualifies for this program…is ordered to serve 10 days in a county jail, he/she would
- pay $800,
- work a total of 80 hours, and
- never spend a day behind bars.
The “trustee” could more-or-less maintain his/her work or school schedule, sleep in his/her own bed and simply perform janitorial duties in the Whittier facility.
Work involves cleaning jail cells, floors, rooms, etc. Participants in the trustee program are supervised by a deputy and have no contact with any of the inmates.
This is just one reason why it is critical to seek legal representation from an experienced local attorney. Only a savvy lawyer who is familiar with the local sentencing customs and judges would know
- to ask for this type of alternative sentence, and
- the most persuasive arguments to convince the sentencing judge to allow his/her client to receive such a sentence.
Call us for help…
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.
1Our Whittier criminal defense attorneys’ offices are located at 6528 Greenleaf Avenue, Whittier, CA 90601. In addition, our Los Angeles criminal defense lawyers have local law offices in Beverly Hills, Burbank, Glendale, Lancaster, Long Beach, Los Angeles, Pasadena, Pomona, Torrance, Van Nuys and West Covina.