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Tuscaloosa County Jail

County Jail

Last Updated: April 30, 2020
1600 26th Ave, Tuscaloosa, AL 35401
Security Level
County - medium
Phone Carrier
Facility Type
Satellite View of Tuscaloosa County Jail

Tuscaloosa County Jail basic information to help guide you through what you can do for your inmate while they are incarcerated. The facility's direct contact number: 205-349-4511

This facility is for adult inmates.

The Tuscaloosa County Jail is a medium-security detention center located at 1600 26th Ave Tuscaloosa, AL which is operated locally by the Tuscaloosa County Sheriff's Office and holds inmates awaiting trial or sentencing or both. Most of the sentenced inmates are here for less than two years. Tuscaloosa County accepts inmates from surrounding towns, municipalities, the US Marshal's Service and the Tuscaloosa Police Department who do not have their own long-term lock-up.

This facility houses all inmates both minimum and maximum security for the misdemeanor as well as felony arrest issued by the courts. The jail handles prisoners for all jurisdictions in Tuscaloosa County. Included in the jail is a Drug Court and an Identification and Extradition unit. The technology, kitchen, medical and dental as the living quarters are among the most modern in the state. Inmates are provided a copy of the Tuscaloosa County Jail Inmate Handbook before being escorted to their assigned housing unit. Upon release, inmates are required to return the Handbook to the Officer processing their release from the Tuscaloosa County Jail. Any inmate that does not return their handbook, which was issued to them, is subject to a monetary fine.

This handbook does not contain all rules and regulations that govern the inmate population but does contain guidelines for the conduct and general expectations of the incarcerated in the Tuscaloosa County Jail. Because a rule or regulation does not appear in this handbook does not mean that it does not exist and that it doesn’t apply to the incarcerated population.


Inmate Funds - Upon committal to the Tuscaloosa County jail, you will be required to surrender any and all forms of money in your possession. Upon surrendering all monies it will totaled, logged, and a receipt issued to you. During your incarceration, you may use this money to purchase items from the commissary, or release it to an outside source. After your release from the Tuscaloosa County Jail, you may return and pick up your funds or remaining funds from the commissary clerk on the scheduled days and times which are: Monday thru Friday 8 a.m. 4 p.m.

Inmate Property - Upon entering the Tuscaloosa County Jail you were patted down. This was to ensure that you will not introduce contraband into the facility. Before you will be booked all property that you have will be surrendered to the on-duty booking rover to be inventoried. During this process, you will be issued a “tote” with a number. Your property will be safely stored until your release from this facility. After the completion of the inventory sheet and your signature stating that all property has been surrendered and properly logged, you will begin the booking procedure. Depending on the situation this process can take up to an hour. If you are unable to post bail, you are encouraged to release your property to a relative or friend. Unless you are sentenced to state time your clothing will be the only items not released.

County Issued Items - Upon your committal and before being escorted to your assigned housing unit, the following items will be issued to you.

  • 1 uniform shirt
  • 1 uniform pant
  • One mattress
  • One blanket
  • Two sheets (one fitted and one sheet)
  • One pillow
  • One pillowcase
  • One Towel
  • One Face towel
  • One toothbrush
  • One tube of toothpaste
  • One bar of soap
  • One roll of toilet paper
  • One cup
  • One inmate handbook
  • One property bag

Permitted Items - Personal clothing can be purchased from the commissary. You are allowed up to three of any clothing item listed. Other permitted items are:

  • Contact lenses
  • Prescription eyeglasses (approved by medical staff)
  • One (1) Religious Text such as Holy Bible, Quran, Torah etc.
  • Three (3) Photos
  • Legal documents pertaining to your case

If incoming mail includes items you have already met your limit on you may return them to sender or have them placed in your personal property or surrender them to staff for disposal. Any items found in excess of allowed limits will be confiscated. You may have approved white underclothing brought to you within the first 72 hours of your incarceration seven days a week between the hours of 8 am and 4pm

Contraband - Any item not approved for entry into housing units, listed on the inmate commissary order form, or not issued by the facility are considered contraband. This includes articles of clothing such as undergarments, foot ware, tobacco products, etc..


Inmate Request Forms - To ensure quick and effective communications with the facility staff, an inmate request form is available to you. Inmate request forms are kept on each individual post and can be obtained from asking the on-duty officer assigned to your post. All inmates request forms should be submitted to the post office. Forms submitted that are non-legible and unsigned will be discarded.

Inmate Medical Forms - Inmate medical request forms can be obtained by medical staff and or post officers. To obtain medical assistance a medical request form must be filled out completely and returned to the on-duty roving officer assigned to your post. However, you will be required to pay a co-payment charge. Any request for non-prescribed medication must also be submitted on a medical request form (NO EXCEPTIONS). There is a fee for non-prescribed medications.

Inmate Correspondence - During your incarceration you have access to the U.S. Postal Service, and may correspond with persons and organizations subject only to the limitations necessary to maintain order and security however, all incoming and outgoing mail is checked by staff for content, cash, money orders, and any unauthorized items considered to be contraband before being delivered to the appropriate person. Prohibited items received through the mail are returned to the sender at the sender’s expense, or discarded. Any items that violated federal, state, local statutes, or poses any threat to the safety security or orderly running of the facility are prohibited and subject to criminal prosecution.

You have the right to correspond with counsel and courts without having correspondence read, but keep in mind that all mail is checked for contraband. Any Correspondence from inmates of the Tuscaloosa County Jail with inmates of other facilities must be approved by the Chief Jail Administrator.

All out-going mail is stamped “Inmate Tuscaloosa County Jail”. Incoming mail must have your full name that was used during the time of booking, and your housing location.


Telephones - During your stay, you have access to telephones which are located in each housing unit and are made available daily excluding meal times and lockdown status. To place a telephone call from this facility you will be required to use a special PIN number given to you during the booking process. This number is the same as your commissary number. All calls are outgoing and collect calls. There will be a toll charge billed to the party accepting the call. All calls are subject to monitoring and recording.

You should be respectful of others by keeping calls to fifteen minutes and staying an arm's length away from anyone using the telephone. Staff members will not transfer calls and will not take messages. If you damage the telephones in any manner you will be subject to disciplinary action and or criminal prosecution.

Three-way calls and inmate to inmate calls are strictly prohibited and may lead to disciplinary action such as having your telephone privileges suspended and or telephone numbers blocked.

Commissary - Commissary Services are made available to you once a week. Commissary order forms are passed out weekly. There is a one hundred dollar limit on purchases.. You are not allowed to make exchanges on store items after your transaction has been processed. To ensure that you received all items ordered, do not exceed the amount of money you have in your account and check your order once you receive it for its accuracy. Any adjustments needed, will be made by the commissary officer. If you are housed in any form of special housing your order will be evaluated before being processed. All items must be kept in an orderly fashion, keep this in mind when ordering. Any inmate who is found to be ordering and or receiving commissary in another inmates name will have their commissary privileges suspended and may face criminal prosecution. The Tuscaloosa County Jail offers a KIOSK located in the Front Lobby of the Facility for Family and Friends to deposit funds on your commissary account. This KIOSK is able to take cash and credit cards. For each cash transaction, there is a service fee charge. All monies taken in by this method are immediately placed on your commissary account for your use.

If you want to make a purchase from commissary the money will need to be posted to your account no later than Wednesday of that week by 8:00 am.


Meals - You will be served at least three meals a day with two of those being hot. All meals are served at regular times during 24-hour periods. You will be required, during this time, to be properly dressed in the required uniform for that day and to line up against the wall and receive your tray in an orderly fashion. Any inmate caught taking more than one tray, will be subject to disciplinary action. After completion of each meal, you will be required to return your food tray. Any person who damages food service items will be subject to disciplinary action and any fees acquired for replacement of the damaged items.

Health Care - Medical care is available twenty –four hours a day for emergencies and on a regular scheduled basis for non-emergencies.

Sick call is conducted Monday thru Saturday. You must submit a request for medical evaluation to be seen during sick call. If you fail to turn in a request, or miss sick call for any reason you must wait until the next scheduled sick call. Sick slips are distributed daily by jail staff. Sick call is conducted by a licensed nurse. To see the doctor, a nurse must refer you. If you become ill, you should notify the on-duty rover for your post in order to receive prompt medical care.

Inmate Worker Program - Inmates who are interested in becoming an Inmate Worker can obtain an application from any on-duty post rover. Inmates selected are those that are considered to be low-security risks and show a promise of good behavior and consistent work habits.

Inmate Work Release Program - The Tuscaloosa County Jail offers an Inmate Work Release Program for those that are qualified. This program allows you to work your current job while being incarcerated. To apply for participation in this program you will need to obtain a Work Release Application from your Pod or Post Rover. There will be a 25% charge taken from the gross of each paycheck if selected for this program.

Inmate Locator

Tuscaloosa County Jail publishes the names of their inmates currently in their facility in Alabama. 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

Tuscaloosa County Jail - Visitation


The Tuscaloosa County Jail now has Video Visitation which allows the inmate to visit via video from within their cell. This cuts down on movements in the jail thus providing a safer environment for the staff. Funds for commissary can be added to an inmates account via a kiosk located in the lobby of the Tuscaloosa Co. Jail.

Telephone: (205) 349‐4511

I. To Schedule an Appointment

a. Visitation is held seven (7) days a week from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm.

b. Call between the Hours of 7am – 4pm the day BEFORE you want to visit an inmate.

II. Visitation Rules and Guidelines

a. Only ONE (1) visit per week. Sunday starts the new week

b. Only TWO (2) people per visit. You must be listed on the inmates visitation list to make a visitation appointment.

c. Must be at least sixteen (16) years of age to visit. Anyone under the age of eighteen (18) must be accompanied by an adult with a valid I.D.

d. All persons arriving for a scheduled visitation must check in at the front desk no later than fifteen (15) minutes prior to the scheduled time.

e. Purses, Bags and or cell phones are not allowed in the facility. Please leave them in your vehicles.

f. Anyone caught visiting with an unauthorized inmate on restrictions will have their visitation privileges revoked by the facility for period determined by the Chief Jail Administrator.

III. Dress Code

a. Appropriate dressing is required for any and all visitations. Please follow the following guidelines.






b. Dress code is strictly enforced. Failure to follow dress code guidelines will prevent you from being allowed into the visitation area.

IV. Prior Arrests and or Convictions of Visitor

a. All visitors that have been incarcerated at the Tuscaloosa County Jail charged with a Misdemeanor will be denied visitation for a period of six (6) months from the date of your release.

b. All visitors that have been incarcerated at the Tuscaloosa County Jail charged with a Felony will be denied visitation for a period of one (1) year from the date of your release.

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Facility Type

Tuscaloosa County Jail is run by the county sheriff’s department and the prison is run by the state department of corrections. Jail is for inmates who are awaiting time or who have been sentenced to less than a year. Prison is only available for people who have been sentenced to more than a year on any one charge.

Neither prison nor jail is nice but they differ in their levels of security, the programs they have and the quality of the environment. Additionally, an inmate cannot ask for a motion to reconsider once they have been transferred to the custody of the department of corrections.

The Sheriff’s department calculates what percentage of your jail time that you actually have to serve. The law requires that the sheriff’s department make people serve a minimum of 50% of their sentence if they are convicted of a misdemeanor.

The jail will accept inmates from the US Marshal and ICE where space is necessary. In comparison, state prison is for inmates serving lengthier sentences on crimes that are more severe in nature.

The Tuscaloosa Sheriff’s Department calculates what percentage of a felony jail sentence a person will serve. The law requires that an inmate serve at least 85% of their felony jail sentence for non-mandatory time and 100% of their mandatory time.

Tuscaloosa County Jail also offers and manages alternatives to jail such as work release programs, work furlough, house arrest, and private county jails where the person convicted can serve their sentences on weekends. Because overcrowding is a problem in both county jail and state prison, both systems operate a good behavior program. Those who are on good behavior can have their sentences reduced or cut.

If you are not serving a mandatory minimum sentence and you do not get into trouble while in jail the sheriff’s department will typically give automatic good behavior time. When you first receive your release date from the jail, within a few days of being incarcerated, the good time deduction will have already been included in most cases. For non-mandatory misdemeanor good time off is 50% and for felonies is typically about 10-15%.

Custody/Security Level

The Tuscaloosa County Jail is located in Alabama and takes in new arrests and detainees are who are delivered daily - call 205-349-4511 for the current roster. Law enforcement and police book offenders from Tuscaloosa County and nearby cities and towns. Some offenders may stay less than one day or only for a few days until they are released in a court proceeding, some after putting up a bond and then are released to a pretrial services caseload under supervision by the court, or are released on their own recognizance with an agreement to appear in court.

The jail is divided into "pods," each of which includes individual cells, common areas, and an outside recreation court — a space bound by towering concrete walls. All meals, are approved by a dietitian. Common area tables are made of solid steel with attached four seats. Inmates crowd around the tables playing cards or board games like chess and checkers. Inside the cells, there is only a sliver of a window allows inmates to peer out. There are two to three inmates per cell, The jail is crowded at about 90 percent capacity and this population varies day-to-day sometimes over-crowded. There are a number of people who arrive at the jail actively or recently drunk or high, or arrive with injuries from fights/assaults that led to their arrest, and/or are mentally ill with no other place for law enforcement to deliver them. This makes the intake process challenging for the jail’s staff and its medical personnel.

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How To Send Things

There are strict procedures for everything related to "sending things to an inmate" in a County - medium facility. This includes sending money for commissary packages, sending mail like letters with photos, magazine subscriptions, buying phone time, postcards and greeting cards, and even distance learning courses (get your degree, you've got a lot of extra time). You also need to know about visitation, what are the hours and rules.

All of the information you could ever need to know is below, patiently scroll the page and get as much information about Tuscaloosa County Jail that you'd ever want to know. If there is anything that you were looking for, but don't see, please email us at aid@inmateaid.com.

How To Send Money:

How to Send an Inmate Money in Alabama

Here are some general guidelines for sending money to an inmate's trust account; but not specific to a particular facility, institution or jail. Inmates need money to access several privileges like weekly shopping at the commissary, making phone calls, using the email service where offered, using the electronic tablets where offered and paying their co-pay when needing the medical or dental services. Some county jails require a per-night fee for the jail’s expenses.

What is a Commissary?

A commissary is a store within the jail. Commissary day is usually held once a week and can only be used if the inmate has funds in their commissary account, like a bank account within the institution. If the inmate has a job, their paycheck is deposited into this account, too.

The Commissary sells various products that the inmates may purchase if they have money on their books. Items sold are clothing, shoes, snacks and food, as well as hygienic products like soap, shampoo, and shavers. The commissary also sells products like books, magazines, televisions, radios, playing cards, headphones, MP3 players, electronic tablets, songs and educational programming. They also sell paper, envelopes, and stamps allowing the inmate to write their loved ones, friends and family. Facilities will provide stamps and paper to inmates who are indigent – eligible where no money has been in their commissary account for at least 30 days.

How you send money to an inmate?

Sending money to an inmate varies from state to state, depending if it is county, state or federal, their ways of accepting money for inmates’ changes by the money transfer company they’ve contracted with. Federal Prisons and some state-level prisons have centralized banking systems which means that you do not need to know where they are specifically, just that they are in the state systems of for instance the California, Texas, Florida DOC or the FBOP to name a few.

How do I send money using MoneyGram?

Some facilities will allow you to deposit cash through the lobby window stand-alone kiosk in the lobby or visitation room. Most facilities will also accept a postal money order mailed to the institution’s inmate mailing address made payable to the full inmate’s name.

Electronic banking allows friends and family members to send the funds online, and correctional departments are starting to favor this method because it is less work for staff and more accurate/easier to keep track of, as well as being more convenient.

Regardless of the method of sending funds, there are several key things you will need to know:
• Inmate’s full committed name
• Inmate’s ID number
• Inmate’s location – or a system like the federal BOP

Before sending any funds you should find out what online transfer companies the institution your inmate is incarcerated in uses. You can find this information on our site by navigating to the facilities page click on the Money Transfer button under the address and phone number.

Pay close attention to the rules of the facility. Sometimes they will require money senders are on the inmate's visitation list. Some correctional facilities have a deposit limit, like $200-300 at a time, but in federal, there is no limit.

MoneyGram, JPay, OffenderConnect, AccessCorrections, JailATM, WU, Touchpayonline, tigercommissary, smartdeposit are some of the money transfer firms being used by various facilities. MoneyGram is by far the oldest and most trusted.

Who else can access the money you send?

An inmate with fines or restitution will be subject to commissary/trust account garnishment. If the inmate has these financial obligations, they will be extracted from the inmate’s bank account. It may be a percentage or the entire amount depending on the situation. We recommend inmates who are going into their bid contact the counselor and make an arrangement beforehand. If you go in knowing they are taking 20-25% of all deposits is better than have them take it all and you find out in the commissary line when the account is zero.

Why is my inmate asking for more than I normally send?

This is generally a signal that the inmate is doing something they shouldn’t and need money to get them out of or through a situation. It could be gambling, it could be extortion it could be other things you don’t need to know on this forum (for now). Set boundaries with your inmate. Tell them that “this is the amount I can send each month” and that is it. There are no extras beyond the boundary. Also, NEVER send money to the account of another inmate on your inmate’s instruction. This is a sign that something is not right. If the corrections people discover this, and they do more times than not, it will result in some severe disciplinary action to the inmate, and certainly the loss of all privileges.

Who can I call if I suspect something?

We recommend speaking with the counselor or case manager of the facility and use a generic reference in the event that your suspicions are wrong. You needn’t put them in a more difficult position if they are.

Inmate Care Packages:

How to Buy Inmate Commissary Care Packages Online

Show your loved one how much you care – order a package today! The facilities usually have a weekly limit of about $100 per inmate, plus processing and tax. The orders do NOT count towards the inmates weekly commissary allowances Deposits can be made online for inmates 24/7 using a credit/debit card

There are also a few services that allow you how to order inmate commissary online. These trusted providers are approved and share revenue with the prisons from the sales to the inmates.

Here is a list of other similar programs prison commissary: Keefe Group, Access Securpak, iCareGifts, Union Supply Direct, Walkenhorst's, CareACell

Inmate Commissary:

What is Inmate Commissary?

Prison commissary (also sometimes referred to as inmate canteen) is a store for inmates housed within a correctional facility. While the very most basics may be provided for by a given correctional department, there are also other important goods/services that Florida prisoners and inmates must buy. For instance, supplies such as supplementary food, female hygiene products, books, writing utensils and a plethora of other things are examples of things that can be purchased as part of an inmate commissary packages for goods.

What is an Inmate trust account?

When you add money to an inmate account, the prison funds are stored on an inmate trust fund. This prison account basically acts as a personal bank account of an inmate. They will use this account to make Inmate Calls, pay for postage to Send Photos from Inmates, send emails from inmates, purchase Items from Commissary, receive wages from jobs, and more.

How To Send Mail:

This is how to send your inmate at Tuscaloosa County Jail letters, photos, postcards, greeting cards and magazines

Incoming and outgoing inmate mail is subject to inspection for the presence of contraband that might threaten the safety, security or well-being of the jail/facility, its staff, and residents. Inmates may receive only metered, unstamped, plain white postcards no larger than 4" x 6" as mail. Writing must be in pencil or blue or black ink. Any other mail will be returned to the sender. If no return address is available, unauthorized mail will be stored in the inmate's locker until the inmate's release.

Inmate mail cannot contain any of the following: Create an immediate threat to jail order by describing the manufacture of weapons, bombs, incendiary devices, or tools for escape that realistically are a danger to jail security; Advocate violence, racial supremacy or ethnic purity; No current inmate-to-inmate mail will be allowed and will be destroyed.

The easiest workaround is to look over the mailing services of InmateAid. We have an automated system for sending your loved one that special message or picture. We send thousands of pieces of mail per month with NO issues with the prisons or jails. The envelopes display the InmateAid logo, the mail room knows for certain that the contents will not be compromising. This trust was established in 2012.

How To Send Greeting Cards and Postcards:

Greeting cards are great for the holidays and birthdays. The ones from the store often have more than just the message because the policies surrounding appropriate content (no nudity or sexually suggestive material no matter how funny), and they cannot have glitter, stickers or anything else that makes the card different from a normal plain old card. Instead of going to the Hallmark store in the mall and looking around for hours - go to our easy to search Greeting Cards service.

It takes literally 45 seconds and it's very affordable for what you're getting (and what they are getting, too!). Select from 100s of birthday, anniversary and every holiday you can think of, and VERY easy to send from your phone on InmateAid:

Don't forget Christmas, Thanksgiving, Mother's Day, Father's Day, New Year's, Ramadan, Hanukkah, Passover, Easter, Kwanzaa or Valentine's Day!

In less than a minute and only $0.99, this act of kindness will be worth a million to your inmate. If you have a picture or two and don't want to write a long letter. Type out a little love in the message box and send your latest selfie... only 99 cents!

Don't wait until the moment has passed, it's easy and convenient to let them know you're thinking of them at every moment.

How To Send magazines and Books:

Send magazines to Tuscaloosa County Jail at 1600 26th Ave, Tuscaloosa, AL

Send the best magazines and books to your Inmate in jail or prison, it's the gift that keeps on giving all year round, There is nothing more exciting to an inmate (besides their release date) than getting their favorite magazine every month at mail call.

Magazines and books must come directly from the publisher. You are not allowed to send single magazines in an envelope. They need to come directly from the publisher with your inmate's name affixed to the address label. Magazine subscriptions are easy to set up, it takes literally 2 minutes.

You know when you go into the grocery and browse the new magazines on display? You see hundreds. Inside they place a little card that if you fill it out and send it in with your inmate's name, ID number and facility address - you drop it in the mail and in 8-12 weeks your inmate gets an issue every month for a whole year. Thankfully, there is an easier way, just CLICK here and browse yourself. Select a title or two and add your inmate's name to the order. It's fast, it's reliable and it's at a discounted rate for your convenience.

How To Save Money on Inmate Calls

The prison phone companies have a monopoly at the facility they have a contract with. Profits are shared so there is no incentive for their representatives to show you how to save money. They post their rates and in almost every case, there are at least two pricing tiers. Depending on where you are and where your inmate is, the type of phone number you use will make all the difference.

In federal prison, the answer is simply that a new local number will change your inmate's call rate from $.21 per minute to only $.06 per minute. Fed gives you only 300 minutes per month, the local line service is only $8.95, no hidden fees or bundling of other unwanted service charges

For the other facilities that are not federal, it used to be that a local number was the answer. Now, its market intelligence and InmateAid has made it their business to know what the best deal is in every scenario. And we can tell you that in 30% of the cases, we cannot save you a penny - and neither can anyone else. But we will give you a refund if we can't save you money.

For more specific information on inmate calls, you will want to navigate to the facility your inmate is incarcerated in through our site by going to Prison Directory and following the links to the Discount Telephone Service - get an honest estimate before you buy.

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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