The San Diego Central Jail (SDCJ) serves as the primary point of
intake for male prisoners in San Diego County. Over
75,000 bookings are initiated at SDCJ.
The facility is staffed by just over 200 sworn employees and nearly
200 professional staff members.
SDCJ opened in May 1998. The state-of-the-art facility
makes extensive use of touch-screen
controls and video surveillance. At the heart of the facility is the
Central Command Center, which has the capability of electronically
controlling all jail operations in the event of an emergency or
major system failure.
SDCJis 230 feet tall, making it the
tallest construction project ever undertaken by the County of San
Diego. It consists of 11 floors with a total of 17 levels counting
the mezzanines and basement. The building provides a pleasing aesthetic addition to the downtown San
Diego skyline, having been awarded multiple “orchids” for
architectural design, interior design, and lighting design. The
Board of State and Community Corrections (BSCC) rated capacity is 944 beds.
The population at SDCJ consists primarily of
special handling inmates, newly booked inmates awaiting transfer
to other facilities and pre-arraignment inmates. The special handling inmates consist of those
with serious medical challenges, those under psychiatric care,
inmates representing themselves in court, as well as defendants
facing high-publicity trials.
SDCJ provides a wide range of medical
and psychiatric services, including on-site dialysis, infectious
disease control, and dental care. Services are provided by
physicians, psychiatrists, dentists, nurses, and clinical social
workers. SDCJ’s Psychiatric Security Unit is the largest acute
psychiatric treatment facility in San Diego County.