AR DOC-Varner Unit & Supermax

State Prison

Last Updated: February 29, 2024
State Hwy 388, Gould, AR 71643
Mailing Address
PO Box 600, Grady, AR 71644-0600

Varner Unit is for State Prison offenders sentenced anywhere from one year to life by the State Court in the county where the charges were filed

All prisons and jails have Security or Custody levels depending on the inmate’s classification, sentence, and criminal history. Please review the rules and regulations for State - maximum facility.

The phone carrier is Securus Tech®, to see their rates and best-calling plans for your inmate to call you.

If you are unsure of your inmate's location, you can search and locate your inmate by typing in their last name, first name or first initial, and/or the offender ID number to get their accurate information immediately Registered Offenders

Satellite View of AR DOC-Varner Unit & Supermax

You can support your loved ones at Varner Unit on InmateAid, if you have any immediate questions contact the facility directly at 870-575-1800.

Located at State Hwy 388 in Gould, AR, Varner Unit carefully assigns inmates based on their custody level, considering factors like criminal history. Varner Unit offers diverse educational and vocational programs aimed at equipping offenders for successful reintegration into society and reducing recidivism. Through these initiatives, inmates gain skills and confidence, fostering personal growth and resilience.

When someone you care about ends up in a state prison, it can be tough to navigate the ins and outs of the system. From figuring out how to stay in touch to understanding what you can do to make their time easier, it can feel overwhelming. That's where this webpage comes in handy. It's here to help you get the lowdown on AR DOC-Varner Unit & Supermax so you can stay connected and support your loved one during their time inside.

While incarcerated, reading is often the best use of time. Please note that books and magazines, puzzles, and word searches ordered for inmates must come directly from the publisher. This policy ensures that the items are new, untampered, and comply with the facility's regulations. Prisons and jails enforce this rule to prevent the introduction of contraband or prohibited materials. By restricting orders to publishers, the facility can better maintain security and control over the content entering the institution. Any books or magazines not received directly from the publisher will be rejected and not delivered to the inmate.

The Varner Unit, situated in Lincoln County and operated by the Arkansas DOC, is a high-security state prison for adult male inmates. It can house over 1,712 prisoners, including a 468-bed supermax facility. The supermax and non-supermax facilities are separate from each other.

Notably, the Varner Unit Supermax houses male inmates scheduled for execution in Arkansas, with the actual executions taking place at the nearby Cummins Unit. The prison also serves as the location for female death row inmates. Varner is considered one of the state's "parent units" for male prisoners, serving as one of several units of initial assignment for processed male prisoners.

Operational activities at the Varner Unit include Death Row, a GED Program, Mental Health Classes, the Principles and Applications for Life (PAL) Program, Regional Maintenance, Substance Abuse Treatment Programs, the Think Legacy Program, and Vo-Tech vocational training.

The Varner Unit was opened in 1987 with 300 beds, later expanded to 700 beds and further increased to its current capacity. The supermax units were established in 2000, with a significant portion of construction costs covered by federal grants.

Historically, the Varner Unit was nicknamed the "Gladiator School" as it housed all young male offenders in the state prison system at one time. In 2003, all 39 Arkansas death row inmates were relocated from the Maximum Security Unit to the Supermax at the Varner Unit.

In 2011, a confrontation among prisoners and correctional officers resulted in injuries among the officers. Additionally, during 2004/2005, an electric fence was installed between two non-electric fences at the Varner Unit, with inmate labor assisting in its construction.

Inmate Locator

Varner Unit maintains a database of current inmates and their locations within the system. To locate an inmate, begin by using the DOC locator tool, which requires entering the first three letters of the inmate's first and last name, allowing for variations in spelling.

If unable to locate the desired information through free resources, users may opt to use the Arrest Record Search, which requires payment. While this option incurs a small fee, it provides access to the most up-to-date data available.

Get an Arrest Record immediately.

Visitation Information

Visiting hours for Varner Unit are subject to change, so it's crucial to confirm them by contacting the facility directly by phone. Please reach out to 870-575-1800, on visitation procedures, applications, or directions to the facility in Gould. Please note that visitors will undergo a thorough search before entering the premises, and personal belongings, including cell phones, are strictly prohibited. Individuals under probation, parole, or community corrections supervision must obtain approval from their supervising officer and the superintendent before visiting, although such visits are not typically approved.

Ask The Inmate

Ask a former inmate questions at no charge. The inmate answering has spent considerable time in the federal prison system, state and county jails, and in a prison that was run by the private prison entity CCA. Ask your question or browse previous questions in response to comments or further questions of members of the InmateAid community.