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Custody of Prisoners

The U.S. Marshals Service is responsible for the safe and secure confinement, care and transportation of federal prisoners from the time of court-ordered custody until either their acquittal or their conviction and delivery to the Federal Bureau of Prisons to serve their sentence.

Once ordered into custody by a U.S. District Court, the U.S. Marshals Service assumes responsibility for all prisoners charged with a federal offense, regardless of which state, local or federal law enforcement agency made the arrest.

A police and a prisoner in handcuff

Alert


Prisoner Suicide Prevention

If you believe a prisoner in the custody of the United States Marshals Service (USMS) has a life-threatening medical or mental health condition requiring IMMEDIATE attention, please dial 911 if you are calling from the same county or city where the prisoner is located; otherwise, call the local emergency telephone number for emergency services for the area where the prisoner is located. You can also directly contact the detention facility where the prisoner is being housed. You may also call the National Suicide and Crisis Lifeline at 988 if the prisoner is in suicidal crisis or emotional distress. 

If you wish to communicate non-emergency prisoner medical and mental health matters, please contact the detention facility where the prisoner is being housed directly or the local USMS Federal District office. A list of the Federal District USMS offices can be found at: https://www.usmarshals.gov/local-districts.

Operations Program Overview

The U.S. Marshals Service houses over 63,000 prisoners in federal, state, local and private jails throughout the nation. In order to house these pre-sentenced prisoners, the U.S. Marshals Service contracts with approximately 1,200 state and local governments to rent jail space.

Seventy-five percent of the prisoners in U.S. Marshals custody are detained in state, local and private facilities; the remainder are housed in Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) facilities.

Phone: (703) 740-8400

Did you know?

  • $2.19 billion was the total expenditures for federal prisoners in U.S. Marshals custody in fiscal 2023.

  • $111 was the average daily prisoner detention cost in fiscal 2023.

  • 501,456 prisoners were escorted by the U.S. Marshals Service to court appearances and other required events in fiscal 2023.

  • 97,630 prisoners were received by the U.S. Marshals Service in fiscal 2023.

Transportation Program Overview

The U.S. Marshals' Justice Prisoner and Alien Transportation System (JPATS) manages the coordination, scheduling and secure handling of prisoners in federal custody, transporting them to detention facilities, courts and correctional institutions via a network of aircraft, buses, vans and cars.

Justice Prisoner and Alien Transportation System supports the federal judiciary through its scheduling and transportation responsibilities. Justice Prisoner and Alien Transportation System transports sentenced prisoners who are in the custody of the Federal Bureau of Prisons as well as to hearings, court appearances and detention facilities. Military and civilian law enforcement agencies use Justice Prisoner and Alien Transportation System to shuttle their prisoners between different jurisdictions at a fraction of what commercial sources would charge.

Justice Prisoner and Alien Transportation System

Phone: (816) 490-4700

Non-Federal Request Form for Movement

The Non-Federal request form for prisoner movement needs to be filled out prior to transportation. Prisoner must be accompanied by medical paperwork that shows TB (tuberculosis)clearance completed within the past 12 months.

Non-Fed-Request-Movement.pdf

2022 Prisoner Transportation

Fact Sheet information about Prisoner Transportation division of the U.S. Marshals Service.

2022-Prisoner-Transportation.pdf

Prisoners Eligible to be Transported using Justice Prisoner and Alien Transportation System

All prisoners transported by Justice Prisoner and Alien Transportation System are required to have current tuberculosis clearance. The Non-Federal customer will furnish current tuberculosis clearance paperwork (documented Medical test results showing a negative PPD or chest x-ray) completed within the past 12 months.

Additionally, prisoners with the following conditions will NOT be eligible for transport via Justice Prisoner and Alien Transportation System.

  • Court ordered deadlines
  • Juveniles
  • Sickle cell disease/trait
  • Pregnant
  • Suicidal
  • Confined to a wheelchair
  • Major medical conditions

The Non-Federal request form for prisoner movement needs to be filled out prior to transportation. Prisoner must be accompanied by medical paperwork that shows TB (tuberculosis)clearance completed within the past 12 months.

Non-Fed-Request-Movement.pdf

Customers need to provide
  • A seven (7) day supply of all medications needed by the prisoner. All medications must accompany the prisoner.
  • Pertinent data concerning security risks or other factors regarding the prisoner
  • A current photo of the prisoner
Movement of Tribal Inmates

Tribal inmates must first be referred, approved, and designated under the BOP process for designation of tribal offenders as listed below. A designation letter and all required Non-Federal documents must accompany the tribal offender for transportation.

Any inquiries/requests for designation of a tribal offender go to:

TLOA (Tribal Law and Order Act) Coordinator 
Designation and Sentence Computation Center 
Grand Prairie Office Complex 
U.S. Armed Forces Reserve Complex 
346 Marine Forces Drive 
Grand Prairie, TX 75051   
BOP-CPD-DSC-PolicyCorrespondence-S@bop.gov 
(972) 352-4400

A tribal offender cannot be simply dropped off at a BOP facility, they must follow the referral process and be designated to the BOP facility prior to movement.

Cost to Move a Non-Federal Prisoner

Cost to move a Non-Federal prisoner within the continental United States is updated on a quarterly basis. Currently, the rate will not exceed $2,643, if the movement agreement is signed and received on or before April 15, 2024. In addition, the Non-Federal customer also agrees to reimburse the U.S. Marshals Service for all other costs incurred, including, but not limited to, all medical or death expenses as may be required for the prisoner.

Requesting a Non-Federal Prisoner Movement
  • Non-Federal Customer will contact their local U.S. Marshals' District office
  • U.S. Marshals' District office will coordinate the movement with all effected U.S. Marshals’ offices, Justice Prisoner and Alien Transportation System and the Non-Federal customer
  • Non-Federal Customer will complete the Non-Federal Request for Movement form and will contact their local U.S. Marshals' District office with this request for assistance in movement.
  • U.S. Marshals' District office will complete and provide the Non-Federal customer a Cooperative Prisoner Transportation Agreement (Form USM-105)
  • Non-Federal Customer reviews, signs, and submits the Form USM-105 and supporting documents to the U.S. Marshals' District office
  • U.S. Marshals' District office verifies all appropriate information is provided and signed and submits the Form USM-105 and Form USM-106 to Justice Prisoner and Alien Transportation System
Customer Billing

Non-Federal customers are generally billed the first week of the month following the final day of the prisoner movement. Customers should be reminded that the obligation should be paid once they receive the bill. The final bill will reflect the amount agreed upon. A discounted charge may be billed if the U.S. Marshals Service/Justice Prisoner and Alien Transportation System decides to move the prisoner only via ground transportation.

Reimbursement will be by check or money order made payable to the U.S. Marshals Service and mailed to Justice Prisoner and Alien Transportation System, 1251 Northwest Briarcliff Parkway, Suite 300, Kansas City, MO 64116-1782. Any customer with a bill in an unpaid status after 90 days may be banned from further use of Justice Prisoner and Alien Transportation System for transporting prisoners.

Did You Know?

  • 205,926 prisoners received by U.S. Marshals Service in fiscal 2021.
  • 92,158 prisoner moved by air.
  • Approximately an average of 841 prisoner movements per day was done by JPATS.
  • 113,768 prisoner moved by ground.