New Jersey Department of Corrections

New Jersey Department of Corrections
Uniform Patch of the NJDOC
Current badge of the NJDOC
Abbreviation NJDOC
Motto Dedication, Honor, Integrity
Agency overview
Employees 24,000
Volunteers 1,500[1]
Annual budget 1.076 billion (2013)[2]
Jurisdictional structure
Operations jurisdiction New Jersey, USA
Map of New Jersey Department of Corrections's jurisdiction.
Size 8,729 square miles (22,610 km2)
Population 8.899 million (2013)
Legal jurisdiction State of New Jersey
Governing body Government of New Jersey
Headquarters Whittlesey Road
Trenton, New Jersey 08625

Corrections Officers 6,000
Staff Members 8,000
Agency executive
  • Gary M. Lanigan, Commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Corrections
Child agencies
  • Office of the Chief of Staff
  • Division of Programs and Community Services
  • Office of the Deputy Commissioner
  • Correction Officer Day (or "Fred Baker's Law") (30 July)
  • The American Correctional Association conferred its first-ever "Innovations in Corrections Award" on Engaging the Family in the Recovery Process – An Innovative Approach for the Max-Out Offender

The New Jersey Department of Corrections (NJDOC) is responsible for operations and management of prison facilities in the U.S. state of New Jersey. The department operates 13 major institutions — seven adult male correctional facilities, three youth facilities, one facility for sex offenders, one women's correctional institution and a central reception / intake unit — and a Stabilization and Reintegration Program. The department is headquartered in Trenton.

The NJDOC's facilities house a combined total of 20,000 inmates in minimum, medium and maximum security levels. Approximately 1,200 inmates are incarcerated, and an equal number released each month. The median term for inmates is six years. 47% of inmates are serving terms of one-to-five years; 17% are serving terms of six-to-nine years; and 33% are serving maximum sentences of 10 years or more. As of January 2003, 984 offenders were serving life sentences, including 14 offenders under capital sentences (Note though that all of these have now been commuted; see New Jersey Capital punishment).

Jurisdiction and law enforcement authority

New Jersey State Correction Officers, Parole Officers and Corrections Investigators are authorized to exercise peace officer powers statewide. With this authority, Correction Officers are required to enforce NJRS 2C (New Jersey Criminal Code) within the scope of their employment.[3]

New Jersey State Corrections Officers are authorized to carry on duty the Heckler & Koch USP in .40 S&W. Correction Officers may optionally qualify to carry an authorized off-duty firearm. All off-duty firearms and ammunition must conform to the approved list provided by the New Jersey Department of Corrections.[4]

Since the establishment of the New Jersey Department of Corrections, 24 officers have died in the line of duty.[5]


There are four sworn titles (referred to as ranks) in the New Jersey Department of Corrections:

Title Insignia Uniform Shirt Color
French Blue
French Blue
French Blue

Media campaigns

The New Jersey Department of Corrections established the "Be Smart Choose Freedom" television advertisement campaign in 2005. The State of New Jersey produced 30–60 second public service announcements to warn state residents against going to prison.[6] The Mississippi Department of Corrections, the state corrections agency of Mississippi, decided to start its own "Be Smart Choose Freedom" campaign and use the commercials that aired in New Jersey.[7] The NJDOC commercials were available in English, with one public service announcement also having a Spanish version.[8]


Prison capacity and costs

According to the state budget for fiscal year 2016, the Department of Corrections has capacity to house 20,634 inmates and anticipates a daily average population of 18,894 inmates. It has 6,950 employees for a personnel ratio of 1 person for every 2.8 inmates. The state legislature appropriated $808.4 million to the Department of Corrections in the fiscal year ending June 30, 2014, of which $525 million was used in salaries and wages.[9]

Prison Inmate Capacity[9] Average daily population[9] Annual per capita cost[9] Daily per capita cost[9]
New Jersey State Prison2,0221,796$4,408$121.33
Northern State Prison2,9182,567$35,497$96.99
East Jersey State Prison1,2661,207$49,302$134.71
Central Reception and Assignment Facility969795$53,674$146.65
South Woods State Prison3,4743,354$34,200$93.44
Bayside State Prison2,2372,175$30.648$83.74
Southern State Correctional Facility2,2152,120$31,840$86.99
Edna Mahan Correctional Facility for Women846775$65,716$179.55
Adult Diagnostic and Treatment Center647561$68,494$187.14
Garden State Youth Correctional Facility1,8961,675$29,149$79.64
Albert C. Wagner Youth Correctional Facility1,053935$53,039$144.91
Mountainview Youth Correctional Facility1,091934$40,425$110.45

Death row

Prior to the 2007 repeal of the death penalty, the death row for men was in the Capital Sentence Unit (CSU) in the New Jersey State Prison. The same prison housed the death chamber, and the first death by electrocution occurred on December 11, 1907.[10] This unit was first established in 1907.[10] On December 17, 2007, Governor Jon Corzine signed a bill in which the New Jersey General Assembly passed which abolishes the death penalty, New Jersey became the first state to legislatively eliminate capital punishment since 1965.[11] The day prior, December 16, 2007, Governor Corzine commuted the death sentences of the remaining eight men on death row to "life imprisonment without parole".[12]

See also


  1. "Department of Corrections and State Parole Board FY 2014–2015" (PDF). Testimony before the Senate and Assembly Committees. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
  2. "10. PUBLIC SAFETY AND CRIMINAL JUSTICE 19. CENTRAL PLANNING, DIRECTION AND MANAGEMENT" (PDF). State of New Jersey. Treasury Department. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
  3. NJRS 2A:154-4 Corrections, parole officers, corrections investigators authorized to exercise police powers
  4. N.J.A.C. 10A:3–4 Use of firearms while on-duty and use of personal firearms while off-duty
  5. The Officer Down Memorial Page
  6. Fedkenheuer, Deirdre. "Be Smart – Choose Freedom: New Jersey unveils its crime prevention campaign." Corrections Today. April 2005. 1. Retrieved on August 12, 2010.
  7. "Be Smart. Choose Freedom. Archived 2009-10-02 at the Wayback Machine." Mississippi Department of Corrections. Retrieved on August 12, 2010.
  8. "Welcome to New Jersey's Department of Corrections." New Jersey Department of Corrections. March 2, 2005. Retrieved on August 12, 2010.
  9. 1 2 3 4 5 Office of Management and Budget (New Jersey Department of the Treasury), "Department and Branch Recommendations: Corrections" in State of New Jersey: The Governor's FY2016 Detailed Budget, February 25, 2015, D-66 through D-71. Retrieved August 13, 2015.
  10. 1 2 "Historical Data on Capital Sentence Unit at New Jersey State Prison" (). New Jersey Department of Corrections. May 18, 2005. Retrieved on March 21, 2016.
  11. "Executions News and Developments: 2007". Death Penalty Information Center. 2008. Archived from the original on October 16, 2009. Retrieved July 29, 2008.
  12. "N.J. abolishes the death penalty". NY Daily News.
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