Institutional Security

Topics At A Glance

Gang Identification, Intelligence and Information Sharing

Improving gang intelligence over the past few years is a key component of the Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services’ (DPSCS) efforts to make Maryland institutions safer for both staff and inmates. Through dedicated analysis staff, surveillance, validation and information sharing with other law enforcement we are better managing this population, while making communication among gang members more difficult. During FY12:

  • Since FY07 efforts have resulted in 7,365 validations of incarcerated offenders as gang members.
  • DPSCS continues to root out corrupt staff that may be aiding this population through regulations implemented in FY10 by the Maryland Police and Correctional Training Commissions to check gang membership of prospective correctional officers.

See DPSCS Gang Intervention and Prevention Resources

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Contraband Reduction

Contraband inside correctional facilities often fuels violence by inmates, particularly gangs who often manage the sale and trade of illegal items. In FY07 DPSCS made contraband reduction a priority, especially cell phones which allow inmates to connect to criminal activities on the street, circumventing intelligence efforts. DPSCS continues to be a leader in cell phone interdiction by using multiple approaches and techniques. During FY12:Cell phone graph

  • 159 phones located throughout Maryland during FY12 by cell phone sniffing K9.
  • Procured a cell phone suppression pilot during FY12, which utilizes electronic detection equipment and began at the Metropolitan Transition Center in Baltimore in FY13.
  • Following a spike in contraband finds due to increased interdiction efforts, cell phone numbers are leveling off at 1,312 during FY12, similar to 1,304 in FY11.
  • 77% increase in finds over FY07 when tracking began.
  • Since investing $1.1 million in entrance technology in mid-FY09, we have seen a steady increase in the percent of cell phones found outside the facility. During FY12 19% of the total confiscated were found prior to getting in the hands of inmates, up from 11% in FY10.
  • By opening lines of communication with States Attorney’s offices and hiring an investigative officer dedicated to cell phone prosecution in mid-FY10, DPSCS has opened 834 cases statewide, resulting in approximately 420 being adjudicated through the end of FY12. Of those, 60% have resulted in a guilty finding.

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Safer Institutions

All of these security efforts have made our institutions safer then they have ever been. DPSCS’ commitment to gang intelligence, contraband interdiction and prosecution of those who violate contraband laws have driven down the number of serious assaults (defined as incidents requiring more than basic first aid) on both staff and inmates over the past four years. During FY12:

  • 65% decrease in serious assaults on staff since FY07.assault graph
  • 47% decrease in serious inmate on inmate assaults since FY07.






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Institutional Security News

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Quick Facts

Cell Phone Finds

  • FY07 = 741
  • FY08 = 1,236
  • FY09 = 1,658
  • FY10 = 1,128
  • FY11 = 1,304
  • FY12 = 1,312

Location Found

  • Began tracking location of cell phones found in Feb. 09
  • 19% of total phones found FY12 were intercepted outside vs. 11% in FY10

Cell Phone Prosecutions

Since prosecution efforts expanded in 2009 thru end of FY12

  • 834 contraband cell phone cases opened statewide
  • 420 cases adjudicated
  • 60% guilty conviction rate

Serious Assaults

FY07 vs. FY12

  • 65% decrease in overall serious assaults on staff
  • 47% decrease in overall serious assaults on inmates