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Washington State Department of Corrections

Washington State Department of Corrections
Abbreviation WADOC
Patch of the Washington State Department of Corrections
Logo of the Washington State Department of Corrections
Badge Patch of the Washington State Department of Corrections
Motto Working together for safe communities.
Agency overview
Formed May, 1981
Preceding agency Washington Department of Social and Health Services
Employees 8,000 (2009)
Annual budget $1.8 billion USD (2009)
Legal personality Governmental: Government agency
Jurisdictional structure
Operations jurisdiction* State of Washington, USA
Map of Washington State Department of Corrections's jurisdiction.
Size 71,300 square miles (185,000 km2)
Population 6,724,540 (2010 est.)
General nature
Operational structure
Headquarters Tumwater, Washington
Agency executive Bernard Warner, Secretary of Corrections
Work Releases 15
Prisons 12
Washington State Department of Corrections Website
* Divisional agency: Division of the country, over which the agency has usual operational jurisdiction.

The Washington State Department of Corrections (WADOC) is a department of the government of the state of Washington. WADOC is responsible for administering adult corrections programs operated by the State of Washington. This includes state correctional institutions and programs for offenders supervised in the community.[1] Its headquarters are in Tumwater.[2]


  • History 1
  • Organizational structure 2
  • Department facilities 3
    • Prisons 3.1
    • Work releases 3.2
    • Field offices 3.3
  • Line of duty deaths 4
  • Death row 5
  • See also 6
  • References 7
  • External links 8


In May 1981, the Washington State Legislature transferred the administration of adult correctional institutions from the Washington Department of Social and Health Services, Division of Adult Corrections (DSHS) to the newly created Washington State Department of Corrections. From 1955 to 1981, correctional and mental health facilities were managed by DSHS.[3]

Organizational structure

The Department’s organizational structure includes five major divisions:

  • Prisons
  • Community Corrections
  • Administrative Services
  • Health Services
  • Offender Change
  • Executive Policy

Each division has an Assistant Secretary who oversees the division's operations.[1]

The Secretary of Corrections is the executive head of the Department. The Secretary is appointed by the Governor with the consent of the state Senate.[1]

Department facilities


The Department currently operates 12 adult prisons, of which 10 are male institutions and 2 are female institutions.[4] The Department confines nearly 16,000 offenders in these facilities, with each varying in size and mission across the state.[5]

Work releases

The Department currently has 15 work release facilities. All but one of these facilities is operated by contractors, who manage the daily safety and security and have oversight of the facilities full-time (24-hours a day, 7-days per week). Department staff are located on-site to assist in supervision, monitoring, and case management of the offenders and monitoring of the contracts.[6]

Offenders housed in work release facilities have progressed from full confinement to partial confinement, and are required to seek, secure and maintain employment in the community, and contribute to their cost of room and board. This model is designed to ensure offenders have employment and housing plans when they are released to communities.[3]

Field offices

Community Supervision of offenders occurs at varied locations in the community to include: field offices, community justice centers, Community Oriented Policing (COP) Shops and outstations. Offender’s activities in the community are monitored, which includes home visits, by a Community Corrections Officer to ensure compliance with court, or known as the Indeterminate Sentence Review Board, which was the Washington State Board of Prison Terms and Paroles (ISRB), only those individuals who have been deemed rehabilitated by the ISRB are placed on Parole and Department conditions of supervision, such as Community Supervision and/or Community Custody.[3]

Line of duty deaths

According to the Officer Down Memorial Page Web site, since the inception of what is currently the Washington State Department of Corrections, 6 employees have been killed in the line of duty.[7]

Death row

Washington’s capital punishment law requires that capital punishment imposed by the state’s courts be carried out at the Washington State Penitentiary in Walla Walla. Procedures for conducting executions are supervised by the Penitentiary Superintendent.[8]

Washington utilizes two methods of execution: lethal injection and hanging. Lethal injection is used unless the inmate under sentence of death chooses hanging as the preferred execution method.[8]

Within 10 days of a trial court entering a judgment and sentence imposing the death penalty, male defendants under sentence of death are transferred to the Penitentiary, where they remain in a segregation unit [Intensive Management Unit North (IMU-N) at the prison] pending appeals and until a death warrant is issued setting the date for the execution. Female defendants under sentence of death are housed at the Washington Corrections Center for Women in Gig Harbor before being transferred to the Penitentiary no later than 72 hours prior to a scheduled execution, also housed in IMU North, although the execution chamber is located in 6 Wing.[8]

78 persons have been executed in Washington since 1904, the most recent being Cal Coburn Brown, in 2010.[9]

See also


  1. ^ a b c "About DOC." Washington State Department of Corrections. Retrieved on March 3, 2011.
  2. ^ "Contact Us." Washington State Department of Corrections. Retrieved on September 25, 2012. "Physical Address: 7345 Linderson Way SW Tumwater, WA 98501-6504"
  3. ^ a b c Agency - WA State Department of Corrections
  4. ^ "Prisons - Locations." Washington State Department of Corrections. Retrieved on March 3, 2011.
  5. ^ "Learn More About Prisons." Washington State Department of Corrections. Retrieved on March 3, 2011.
  6. ^ "Work Release - Locations." Washington State Department of Corrections. Retrieved on March 3, 2011.
  7. ^ The Officer Down Memorial Page
  8. ^ a b c "Capital Punishment in Washington State." Washington State Department of Corrections. Retrieved on August 26, 2010.
  9. ^ "Persons Executed Since 1904 in Washington State". Offender Info. Washington Department of Corrections. Retrieved February 3, 2014. 

External links

  • Washington State Department of Corrections
  • Washington State Correctional Industries
  • [2]
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