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Charleston County Detention Center Information

The Charleston County Detention Centre also known as the Sheriff Al Cannon Detention Center was initially set up in 1966.

What is the goal and mission of the Charleston County detention center

The purpose or mission of this detention center is to serve and protect the Citizens of Charleston County and maintain a secure jail operation while preserving the rights and dignity of everyone who is incarcerated.

Overview of Charleston County Detention Center

Three expansions have been made. The first expansion was a four-story addition, which raised the inmate capacity to 661. The second expansion added the two modular units in 2001, and the inmate capacity increased to 789. The third expansion in May 2010 increased the inmate population to 1,917. Currently, the facility consists of five buildings. The original building, has the Training Division, staff gym and showers, as well as the Inmate Library, eight inmate housing units, and two modular units.

The second and third building houses the Administrative offices, conference rooms, a state of the art control center, kitchen, laundry, staff dining, medical department, lobby, visitation area, twenty-one direct supervision units and an infirmary. The fourth building is the work camp facility which is on the same campus.

Charleston County Detention Center
The fifth building is their Juvenile Detention Facility and which is off campus. The Detention Center is surveilled by over 700 cameras in Central Control room to ensure that the facility, inmates, and staff are safe and secure. The Facility’s main entrance requires contracted employees and visitors to pass through a metal detector, and all bags are scanned to ensure no contraband is brought into the facility.

 How many inmates are currently living in the detention center?

The total population of inmates at the Charleston County detention center is 1,161, with a male population of 1,044 and a Female Population of 117.


Housing at the Charleston County Detention Center

The Housing Officers organizes and directs the daily operations in the Housing Units. They are responsible for the custody and care of the inmates in their assigned units.
The Sheriff Al Cannon Detention Center utilizes two styles of inmate housing.

Charleston County Detention Center Inmate Search
1. Direct supervision housing
It is a situation where the inmates' cells are set up around a common area. An officer is assigned a unit with the inmates. The officer moves about the group and interacts with the inmates to maintain security in the group. There is no secure control booth for the officer who is supervising, which means that there are no physical barriers that come in between the officer and the inmates. The officer has a desk for paperwork, which is in the open area. Higher security inmates are housed in these units, and there is a structured schedule for recreation and other activities.

2. Open bay housing
It is a large spacious room with no inmate cells. Bunks are assigned to Inmates that encompass a dayroom. The officer's desk is in the room where all inmate activity can be detected. The officer patrols the unit and interacts with the inmates to maintain security. Lower security inmates are housed in these units. The inmates in this housing space have a less orderly schedule for their recreation and other activities.


Inmates at Charleston County detention center are assigned to these housing units based upon their classification levels which are determined while they are in processing. Classification levels are defined on the inmates' prior criminal history and behavior. After the inmates are housed in the units, all inmate activity is conducted within the group except for medical care and court appearances.

Contact information
You can write to the detention center and address it to this address, Sheriff Al Cannon Detention Center, 3841 Leeds Avenue, North Charleston, SC 29405.


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