There are over 28 state prisons in Ohio, constituting roughly over 43, 200 inmates within these state prisons. All of the state prisons come under the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction. The department is designed and tasked to oversee all of the jails and the inmates.
However, despite countless efforts, there have been many violent attacks within the prisons leading to the death of several inmates.
In this article, I will cover the 7 worst prisons in Ohio but before that, it is important to discuss what makes a prison “worst” to even begin with.
What makes a prison worse?
While the authorities are always on the look-outs, and always doing their best to ensure prisons become a place where criminals are treated, and become stable & productive members of society. Due to this, every prison in the United States of America offers educational and correctional programs to ensure the time spent by an inmate is where they learn to improve themselves.
Despite this, we all know prisons are places where criminals are placed together, which can also bring the worst out of them. This is why murders, protests, fights, formation of gangs, and lobbies are formed within each prison. Their combined actions are what make a prison a difficult place for other inmates.
Furthermore, in making a prison worse for inmates, some responsibility also lies on the government and the concerned authorities. Oftentimes, prisons are filled with so many inmates, other times, they do not have adequate facilities to give to their prisoners, or the funds sent to them get jinxed up with other things.
All of these things add up to making a prison worse for the inmates.
1. Toledo Correctional Institute:
It took several years for Toledo Ohio prison to get itself rid of homicides. There were frequent numbers of homicides within the prison until back in 2012, the state decided to implement a program that is designed at making Ohio prisons safer, and on top of their list was Toledo state person. The exact number of homicides has not been revealed but experts believe the numbers can range in hundreds.
While things have calmed, for now, the Toledo Correctional Institute is still haunted and remembered for its past, and things can erupt at any moment. Authorities have increased their guards and CCTVs, and also improved some of the living conditions of inmates.
Multiple programs have also been offered to the inmates, and the number of prisoners has also been reduced allowing guards to keep a close check on the remaining prisoners.
2. Lucasville Prison in Ohio:
Back in 1993, Lucasville prison was considered to be the most dangerous and notorious prison in the United States of America. The title was given when Lucasville became a hub for extensive riots and mutiny.
At one point, in the same year, the authorities lost control of the prison for over 10 days until they had to call other officers to assist them in bringing back the law and order, and during the process 6 were left dead.
However, the reason for such an extensive number of protests was revealed, it was learned that the living conditions at Lucasville Prison were hell, and later authorities started to work and improved things.
Till then, things have calmed down but the worry remains and guards are actively prepared for anything to erupt.
3. Cuyahoga County Jail:
This is also another worst prison in Ohio. So much so that back in 2018, its warden resigned from his position after he learned that there was going to be an assassination attempt on him.
When it was investigated, seven prisoners were found to be plotting plans on the life of the warden and were given additional sentences.
The assassination attempt was large as a protest against the warden that deliberately kept conditions within the jail extremely horrific, so much so, a report suggested within a year 8 prisoners died due to poor living conditions. When the news made its press, in 2018, activists started to protest outside of the jail, and fortunately, from there, things started to improve.
By now, many things have been improved in this prison, and additional facilities have also been provided to the inmates.
4. Dayton Correctional Facility:
Dayton Correctional Facility has also seen acts of crime within the jail premises. While the authorities have improved the numbers of guards stationed within the jail, it seems not to be doing too much good.
Several fights between different gang members are common and activities take place at the cafeteria of the jail. Several times, the authorities make up a group of inmates that are not allowed to eat when others are eating. This way, fights are reduced.
However, authorities are able to keep a strong check and save the correctional facility from homicides.
5. Allen Oakwood Correctional Institution:
This was opened in 1988 and is considered one of the worst prisons in Ohio largely due to it housing a residential substance abuse treatment unit that gives some of the toughest times to those going through the treatment.
It has been reported that 123 total inmates have been to this unit for treatment and several reported being induced with physical and mental trauma. It has also been reported that many of the inmates were sent to this unit without any prior knowledge, including some who did not even require this treatment.
However, no independent inquiry has been set up to date, and what goes within the unit, no one knows for sure.
6. Lebanon Correctional Institute in Ohio:
Overall, there are no issues with this prison of any sorts of violent attacks, however up until 2003, several of the inmates reported they were physically abused and raped by fellow inmates.
In 2003, the prison adopted what is known as Prison Rape Elimination Act which gave additional power to the warden and guards to protect others from getting raped within the facility. This also allowed the prisoners who rape others to undergo additional sentences.
The Prison Rape Elimination Act also allowed the victims to report the crimes that were induced upon them, leaving the warden with no other option to set up an inquiry and find the culprit. This so far has been successful, and prison is far safer in terms of inmates getting raped.
7. Ohio State Penitentiary, Youngston:
Also referred to as OSP, it houses over 502 inmates due to its capacity and has two different levels depending upon the threat it is believed to have. Levels 5A and 5B are where prisoners are sent when they fail to adapt to the rules and regulations of the jail, and pose a threat to guards.
Not much is known about these two levels but it is believed that no one wants to go there because of several reasons, largely due to being given poor quality food, and locked in one of the worst conditions possible.
Due to this, back in 2011, two death row inmates went on a hunger strike to protest over the conditions they were placed in and demanded to be given the fair rights that they deserve and are promised. Ultimately as a result of this hunger strike, conditions did become fair, and the reports suggest the prison authorities do care more for the inmates than before.
Read more articles about Prisons in our blog: