NRS 209.011 – 209.085 – Overview of the Nevada Department of Corrections

Nevada’s Department of Corrections is a government agency responsible for handling prisoners and managing their sentence when they have been convicted of a crime in a Nevada court of law, or agreed to a plea deal that included serving a period of time in prison.

Definitions for the Department of Corrections

It’s essential to have a clear definition of the words used in the statutes surrounding the establishment and function of the Department of Corrections if we’re going to understand precisely the intent and objectives of law enforcement.

  1. Board – According to NRS 209.021, the word “Board” means the Board of State Prison Commissioners, which is further defined in Section 21 of Article 5 of the Nevada Constitution.
  2. ClassificationAccording to NRS 209.351, this is the process by which each offender’s cases are individually evaluated. It starts with the basics of physical description and date of birth and moves onto whether they can read or write, what their offense was, and encompasses their medical records. This process includes keeping a comprehensive record of the offender’s behavior—their accomplishments as well as their infractions. Classification is used to determine where each offender needs placed and in which programs.
  3. Custody – This is defined as the level of security restrictions that the classification committee places upon the offender after they have completed the classification process.There are five custody levels/security levels:
    • MaximumThe most restrictive. Offenders under the maximum level of security are typically isolated and must be under constant, direct supervision when they exit their cells.
    • CloseThis is still very secure. Offenders in this custody level are a high escape risk and have a high likelihood of misconduct. They are kept under frequent, direct supervision.
    • MediumThis is the security level assigned offenders who are not typically an escape risk when they’re inside a secure institution and do not require constant, direct supervision. Most offenders fall into this class.
    • MinimumOffenders who do not pose an escape risk while being supervised and can be assigned away from the facility with only the supervision of a State employee fall into this class. Their facilities are fence-free and do not have gun towers.
    • Community Trustee – As the least-restrictive level, these offenders are unsupervised when they’re away from the facility. Community Trustees are typically assigned to State government jobs or restitution centers.
  4. Department – This is the nickname used in the statutes for the “Department of Corrections.
  5. Facility – This can refer to any place the Department uses for the care, custody, or training or it’s prisoners. “Facility” does not include an institution but does include community correctional centers, minimum security facilities or other places of confinement, conservation camps, etc.
  6. Institution – This is a prison that’s designed to hold at least 125 prisoners.There are currently eight open state institutions:

  7. Manager – This is the head administrative officer at a facility Part of a manager’s job is to make sure each policy and regulation is implemented and followed, and to make sure each prisoner is cared for, trained, safe, and secured.
  8. Offender – For the sake of these statutes, this is a prisoner charged, convicted, and sentenced to serve a term in the state prison.
  9. Private facility or institution – There are facilities and institution that are not State-run, but, instead, privately owned by an outside organization. In this case, the private organization is responsible for providing its own financing for law enforcement, training, escapee recovery, etc.
  10. Warden – This is the head administrative officer at an institution.

According to NRS 209.061, the Director of the Department of Corrections appoints each institution its own warden. A warden’s duties include implementing each policy and executing each regulation, making sure his prisoners are cared for, trained, safe, secured.

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