USP Victorville is a federal maximum security prison for men, located in Adelanto, California. Victorville was designed to hold 960 inmates, but currently houses over 1400. Housing units were built in a rectangular shape, with 12 units of cells that are roughly 13x6.6 feet large, built for two men. It has been reported that a 3rd inmate sleeps on the floor. Victorville is surrounded by four separate layers of electrified chain link fence, which is fortified by rows of razor wire. Inmate’s communication with the outside world is limited. They e-mail with friends and family using the TRULINCS system which limits the amount of characters they can send, and they are not allowed to view or send pictures. Telephone time is limited to 15 minute calls, with a maximum of 5 hours of phone time per month. Inmates pay for their telephone time out of their personal finance accounts.
Victorville houses many of California’s most violent offenders, and those who are serving long or life sentences. Several high ranking gang members and mafia hit men are serving time at the facility. The prison has a long history of inmate violence and murder, much of which is gang or drug related. However the practice of keeping inmates three to a cell causes most of the daily violence between inmates. Because of the layout of the cell, the inmate who sleeps on the floor is directly in front of the toilet, so if someone has to use the bathroom, the inmate has to cover up with their blanket or get up and stand somewhere else. In any case, the likelihood of the third inmate getting beat down and going to the hospital is extremely high. In 2005, one inmate’s throat was slashed, apparently over a debt of less than $10 worth of tobacco. In 2014, five separate murders occurred within a 9 month period. In April of 2016, an inmate was beaten to death in his cell, the cause of which is still ongoing.
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