Detention Services


The Durham County Detention Facility opened in the summer of 1996 with a capacity of 576 single cells. Designed as a Direct Supervision "New Generation Jail", the building allows for control of inmate behavior by the staff through constant and direct supervision of inmate activities, and the integration of all complex services of a county detention facility. Intake/Release, Criminal Magistrates, Jail Administration, Central Control, Medical, Programs, Staff Facilities, Food Service, Laundry and Facility Maintenance are located on the first two levels. The remaining levels provide inmate housing.

The two-wing configuration of the facility provides maximum separation between detention pods (inmate housing areas), with four mezzanine style housing pods per level. Each of the twelve pods contains two levels of single cells clustered around a dayroom area, with access to the mandated outside recreation spaces of all three housing levels. Two pods are configured with special supervision requirements (one of these special 48-bed housing units is currently leased to house N.C. Department of Corrections prisoners). Also, since the opening of the facility, 160 bunk beds have been added in some cells to increase the facility's capacity to 736.

The design, construction, and operational procedures of this facility group inmates into housing pods according to their behavior/risk classification. With the exception of some treatment, education, and vocational programs, all required services including food, visiting, attorney conference, sick calls, mail, canteen, exercise and recreation are delivered to the inmates. Moving services to the inmates rather than than moving inmates to service, is safer and requires less staff. The inmates' program privileges are based on appropriate conduct and behavior in accordance with our rules/regulations. The housing classification of inmates is essential to safeguard inmates and staff, and to ensure that special population inmates are appropriately managed and assigned to programs.

The intent and purpose of Durham County Detention Facility's inmate programs is to provide all appropriate inmates with the opportunity for participation in an array of educational, vocational, work details, therapeutic, and self-improvement acivities with the goal of providing constructive jail time and supplying our inmates with the information and assistance to reduce jail recidivism.

The following inmate programs are provided at the Durham County Detention Facility:
  • STARR Program (Substance Abuse and Recidivsm Reduction)
  • Sexual Offender Treatment Group
  • ABE/GED Classes
  • Literacy Tutoring
  • Vocational Classes
  • Electronic House Arrest
  • Work Release
  • Work Details
  • Work Programs
  • Religious Services
  • AA/NA Meetings
  • Other Programs/Services:
    • Pretrial screening
    • Classification
    • Visitation
    • Recreation
    • Grievance
    • Discipline Hearings
The overall goal of the Durham County Detention Facility is the secure custody of our inmates and the safety of the public and our staff.