The Texas state has a large population of more than 30 million. Among them, an estimated count of 200,000 people is held behind bars every year. And this is why Texas currently represents the largest prison system in the United States, with the most prisons and prisoners.
Around 133,772 inmates are incarcerated in 104 prisons in Texas state [add internal link], out of which seven units are in Huntsville Texas.
Of all the cities, Huntsville is known as the Prison Capital of Texas; you might be curious to know how many prisons are in Huntsville Texas
The succeeding information includes all the details you want to know about the units in Huntsville, such as the number of prisons and how many prisons in Huntsville, Texas, have women prisoners.
Prisons in Huntsville, Texas
The total number of prisons in Huntsville and nearby areas is seven. These prisons include:
- Texas State Penitentiary
- Byrd Unit
- Ellis Unit
- Thomas Goree Unit
- Wynne Unit
- Holiday Unit
- Estelle Unit
These prisons hold male inmates, whereas female prisoners are kept in other private facilities. Of these seven units, Texas State Penitentiary, also known as the Walls Unit, is the largest prison in Huntsville and the oldest state prison in Texas.
Huntsville is quite well-known for establishing the first Texas state prison and is also called the Home of the Texas State Penitentiary.
The imprisonment period for prisoners in Texas prisons is more challenging than it may seem. And the main reason behind it is the intense heat conditions in the state. Here a concern arises for prisoners, how many prisons in Huntsville Texas are air-conditioned?
Most of them are not air-conditioned, as two-thirds of the prisons in Texas don't have air-conditioning facilities, which apparently makes it very difficult for the prisoners to survive in the extreme heat of Texas.
Many inmates have been dying during the summers for the past few years because of the heat in Texas units, including the Huntsville Unit. However, despite the sudden deaths of prisoners during the temperature rise and heat waves, the state has not acknowledged its actual reason.
A bill regarding the installation of air conditioning systems in prison cells or living rooms was presented at the state assembly. Surprisingly, it hasn't been approved to date.
Now that we know the condition of penitentiaries and also how many prisons are in Huntsville Texas, and the most significant one in them, i.e., the Walls Unit, let's have a wider and more detailed discussion on it.
Texas State Penitentiary
Texas State Penitentiary is the first state prison in Texas. It was constructed in Huntsville in March 1848, just one year after the penitentiary system was introduced. The prison is widely known as the Huntsville Unit.
At the same time, the brick wall in the surroundings of the prison yard has earned it another famous name, i.e., Walls Unit. The prison comes under the control of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice and is maintained by them only.
The Walls Unit is a medium security prison in Huntsville. It is not only the first prison in Texas but has also served as the administrative headquarters for both the Texas Prison System and the Texas Department of Corrections.
The authority of state affairs related to death row came under the control of the Huntsville Unit. The unit provides huge space for prisoners, with a facility of 225 cells included inside it. With over 200 cells, the Texas State Penitentiary can hold up to 1,705 male inmates at most.
It was October 1st, 1849, when the first male inmate, William G. Samsom, was registered in the Huntsville Unit. He was held on the charges of cattle raiding or cattle rustling for nine months. And because of the incomplete construction of the unit, William was soon shifted to a temporary jail, where he completed his entire sentence.
In contrast, Elizabeth Huffman was the first female prisoner to be registered in the Texas State Penitentiary in 1854. She was charged in an infanticide case and completed a year of her sentence in the Walls Unit.
How many Prisoners are in Huntsville, Texas?
Huntsville adds the largest share of the population among all three cities of Walker County. Its current population is 47,277, very near to reaching 50 thousand. Around 15,425 people, which makes up 30% of the city's population, are in jails and prisons.
No matter how many prisons are in Huntsville Texas, the high prisoner count represents an alarming situation for the city. And it is evident by the surging annual crime rate in Huntsville, which stands at 22.64 per 1000 residents. A total number of nearly 1,048 crimes take place yearly in the city, with mainly property-related crimes. The total sum includes 233 violent crimes whereas 815 property crimes.
Considering how many prisons are in Huntsville Texas, it is said to be the Prison Capital of Texas. The city houses seven significant prisons, including the first state prison in Texas, i.e., Texas State Penitentiary. Huntsville's prisons are primarily home to male prisoners, with no sole unit for female inmates.
However, the crime rate of the city, with a notable chunk of the population behind bars, increases safety concerns for residents. It is essential to understand the dynamics of prisons in Huntsville, Texas, including their implications on both inmates and the community, to resolve these concerns promptly.
Is Huntsville, Texas, a safe-to-live neighborhood in the United States?
In a list of the 100 safest places in the US (where the 100th is the safest), Huntsville stands at 18th, which is not a positive sign. It is also crucial to note that the crime rate in Huntsville is over 22 per every 1000 residents, with at least 30% of the population behind bars.
What are the chances of becoming a victim of crimes in Huntsville, Texas?
The crime rate in Huntsville is above the national average crime rate across the neighborhoods in the United States. So, there are higher possibilities of one becoming a victim of a crime, be it a violent or property-related crime. According to an estimate, one person in every 200 residents is likely to become a victim.
How many prisons in Huntsville Texas are for female prisoners only?
None of the seven prisons in Huntsville, Texas, are female-exclusive. However, in initial times, the Huntsville Unit held female prisoners.
They were later shifted to a private location, namely Johnson Farm, for security reasons and better correctional opportunities. In addition, Thomas Goree Prison had an only-female correctional facility till 1982.
Which prison in Texas is responsible for state execution and death row?
The death row and Texas state execution were conducted in the Huntsville Unit in 1923. The death row was later shifted to the Ellis Unit, where it was continued until 1999.
It was changed to the Polunsky Unit (for male prisoners) and the Mountain View Unit (for female prisoners) by the Texas Department of Criminal Justice in 1999.
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