Dane County Jail System - William H Ferris Center

County Jail

Last Updated: January 19, 2020
2120 Rimrock Rd, Madison, WI 53713

Dane County Jail System - William H Ferris Center is for County Jail offenders sentenced up to twenty four months.

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 County - medium facility.

The phone carrier is Inmate Calling Solutions (ICSolutions), 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 Dane County Jail System - William H Ferris Center

Dane County Jail System - William H Ferris Center basic information to help guide you through what you can do for your inmate while they are incarcerated. The facility's direct contact number: 608-284-6100

The Dane County Jail System - William H Ferris Center is a medium-security detention center located at 2120 Rimrock Rd in Madison, WI. This county jail is operated locally by the Dane County Sheriff's Office and holds inmates awaiting trial or sentencing. Most of the sentenced inmates are here for less than two years. Dane County accepts inmates from surrounding towns, municipalities, the US Marshal's Service and the Madison Police Department who do not have their own long-term lock-up.

There are new detainees delivered to the jail daily, you can see arrest records here. Some are released after putting up bail, are released to a pretrial services caseload, are placed under supervision by a probation agency, or are released on their own recognizance with an agreement to appear in court. If there is no release, the inmate must wait here at the jail for their court appearance as a guest of the County, getting a bed and three square meals.

Trustees are inmates who work in the jail as cooks, as orderlies for the staff, in the laundry or in the commissary. The trustees are paid a very small amount for their time and some jail gives the trustees a few days off their sentence in exchange for their work.

When an inmate arrives in jail they are put together in a large holding cell with other inmates in the intake. While in intake they are under heightened observation. Violent and out of control inmates are segregated.

Can I Get Work Release?

Work release is when you are released from jail during the day so that you can go to work. At the end of the day, you return to jail for the night. There are a number of requirements to be able to get into the work-release program. Most programs require your employer to fill out some paperwork. If you want to get into the work release program then apply prior to being sentenced to jail. This will minimize the amount of time you spend in jail waiting to get into the program.

Can I call my family in Jail?

Dane County Jail System - William H Ferris Center has a phone program where inmates make outbound calls only, you cannot call into jail. Since you are paying for those calls don't make it a habit of accepting collect-calls, they are over $15 each. The alternative is to set up an account through their third-party phone company which charges steep fees for each minute used. You are paying for them to call you. Click here if you are going to speak a lot and need a discount on the calls.

Remember - These phone calls are recorded and conversations can be used against you or the inmate so do not discuss your case over these phone lines.

Inmate Locator

Dane County Jail System - William H Ferris Center publishes the names of their inmates currently in their facility in Wisconsin. Your search should start with this locator first to see if your loved one is there.

The second box is the InmateAid Inmate Search. This database of inmates is user-generated content for the purpose of accessing and utilizing any or all of the InmateAid services. If you need our assistance creating your own inmate profile to keep in touch, email us at aid@inmateaid.com and we will assist you in locating your inmate.

As a last resort, you might have to pay for that information if we do not have it. The Arrest Record Search will cost you a small amount, but their data is the freshest available and for that reason they charge to access it.

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Visitation Information

Dane County Jail System - William H. Ferris Center - Visitation


  • Monday thru Friday - 8am, 9am, 6pm, 7pm, 8pm 9pm
  • Saturday and Sunday - 8am, 9am, 10am, 1pm, 2pm, 6pm, 7pm, 8pm, 9pm

Ferris Center

  • Holidays will be extended weekend hours

Dane County Jail-Public Visitation Guidelines & Schedule - Non-Contact visitation at the Dane County Jail, City-County Building, is scheduled by the inmate. All Public Safety Building and Ferris Center visitation is scheduled by the visitor via the IC Solutions website. All inmates are allowed two (2) forty-five minute visitation slots per week. Inmates assigned to the Public Safety Building that are not sentenced with Huber are allowed one (1) forty-five-minute non-contact visit per week and one (1) forty-five-minute video visit per week. Only scheduled visits will be honored. No walk-up visits are permitted. All visits in the Public Safety Building and Ferris Center require 24 hours advance sign up. It is the responsibility of inmates housed in the City-County Building to notify their family and friends of the dates and times of their visit.

Visitors must be on time for their scheduled visits. Anyone arriving after their scheduled start time, regardless of the reason, will be denied.

Visitation Rules - All non-attorney visits are recorded and subject to electronic monitoring. Your participation in jail visitation constitutes consent to this recording, monitoring, and review. Visits from properly registered attorneys will not be recorded or monitored.

The Sheriff’s Office has the authority to terminate visits, to deny visitation privileges, and to deny visitors at any time. For safety and security reasons the following list documents some of the rules that apply to the visitation areas. Violation of any of these rules may result in a denial of the visit, as well as denial of future visitation privileges:

  • Must possess a valid government-issued photo identification card (ID).
  • Inmates are not allowed visits prior to appearing in arraignment court.
  • The passing of any item is prohibited.
  • Visitors cannot be under the influence of drugs/alcohol.
  • All personal items will be secured in lobby lockers before visitor(s) are allowed access into the visitation area. Any items not listed in these rules are considered contraband they are not allowed in Visitation.
  • Visitors are subject to search.
  • Visitors will be denied if there is a no-contact restriction with the inmate.
  • Inmates assigned to non-contact and video visitation will be allowed two (2) adult visitors (one at a time) and up to four (4) children under 18 years of age (two at a time), per visit.
  • Inmates sentenced with Huber are permitted to have contact visits when available. Huber inmates assigned to contact visits will be allowed two (2) adult visitors and up to 4 children under 18 years of age per visit.
  • Children under 18 must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian. An unaccompanied person age 16 or 17 may visit, if the person is married to the prisoner or if the person is visiting their incarcerated parent or legal guardian. Prior approval from Jail Administration is required. Children under 16 must be supervised at all times by a responsible adult while in Visitation and in the lobby of the Public Safety Building and the City-County Building. The visit will be cancelled if the children are not supervised. Sergeant’s approval is needed for any exceptions.
  • One diaper and one baby bottle allowed for infants.
  • Inmate and visitor(s) will be assigned seating arrangements by the staff.
  • Children must be attended to, supervised, and remain at the assigned table.
  • Chairs are not to be moved from other tables without staff approval.
  • Visits will be terminated if the inmate or visitor displays disruptive behavior or causes a disturbance.
  • Visitors must cooperate and follow the direction of staff.
  • It is the responsibility of the visitor to provide proof of their relationship to the satisfaction of the jail staff.

APPAREL: Appropriate clothing and footwear is required. Shoes will remain on at all times.

The following examples are NOT ALLOWED to be worn in the visitation area:

  • Transparent clothing
  • Shorts, skirts or dresses which are shorter than fingertip length (if visitor is standing naturally with hands straight down and fingers extended).
  • Tank tops, “spaghetti” strap tops, halter tops or “tube” tops, etc.
  • Tops/shirts/blouses that expose the midriff.
  • Low cut tops/shirts/blouses.
  • Swimwear
  • Clothing with revealing holes or tears.
  • Coats and Jackets
  • Hats
  • Pants worn below the waist and or hips exposing undergarments.

Professional Visitation Guidelines & Hours:

Professional visitation is conducted via video, non-contact, contact, and telephone.

Professional visitors include, but are not limited to: attorneys, law enforcement, probation & parole agents, licensed private investigators, process servers, clergy, and social workers. Picture ID and professional credentials are required. Additional documentation may be requested.

Recommended Professional Visitation Hours:

Monday - Friday 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Due to mandatory operational duties, please expect delays during the following times:
Daily: 7:00 a.m. - 8:30 a.m. / 11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. / 2:00 p.m. - 3:30 p.m. / 4:45 p.m. – 5:45 p.m.

Conference Room Reservations:

Appointments by Professional Visitors may be made by sending an email to sheriff.cc8@danesheriff.com. Appointments will not be accepted on county-identified holidays and furlough days. Appointments must be made at least three (3) business days prior to the requested visitation date. The conference room may be utilized Monday through Friday: 8 am-11 am, and 1 pm-4:30 pm.

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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.

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