Avery-Mitchell Correctional Institution

Avery-Mitchell Correctional Institution is a medium-custody prison for male inmates that is located in Spruce Pine, North Carolina. This facility can house approximately 816 inmates and is managed by the North Carolina Department of Public Safety.

This prison sits on a 100-acre tract of land beside the Avery and Mitchell County line. The prison is designed with three dormitory-style units, supported by a central administration building and 40 segregation cells.

In 1992, a legislative study committee recommended building more efficient, larger prisons that would allow for the consolidation of small, older units. The General Assembly authorized construction of Avery-Mitchell Correctional Institution in 1995.

Watauga and Yancey correctional centers closed in late 1998 and early 1999. The prison's employees were assigned to work at Avery-Mitchell Correctional Institution and nearby prisons. Avery Correctional Center continued to operate to house offenders working construction and cleanup until September 1999.

The prison's three dormitories are named Avery, Watauga, and Yancey for the three facilities that were consolidated. The prison cost $26.7 million to build. 

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Visiting Hours and Rules


To prevent the potential spread of coronavirus (COVID-19), prison visitation was suspended as of Monday, March 16, 2020. Visitation will resume when conditions are deemed safe.

Regular Visiting Hours

Visitation for offenders at Avery-Mitchell Correctional Institution is determined by their housing assignments as follows:

Regular Population

  • Saturday: 8:30 - 10:30 a.m,. Avery Unit; 1:30 - 3:30 p.m., Watauga Unit
  • Sunday: 1:30 - 3:30 p.m., Yancey Unit

Note: AMCI staff will begin registering visitors at 8 a.m. on Saturday and 1 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday afternoons.

Restricted Housing: Offenders may have visitors by appointment only, provided his visiting privileges have not been suspended. Offenders will be restricted to non-contact visits.

Security Threat Group (STG) Inmates: Visits to offenders who are a validated STG member Level 3 or higher must be done by appointment only and will be restricted to non-contact visits.

Non-Contact Visits: All non-contact visits are by appointment only.

Special Visits: Monday – Friday 9 -10 a.m., 10 - 11 a.m., 1 -2 p.m., 2 - 3 p.m.

AMCI: Special Affairs staff must approve all special visits. If you would like to make an appointment for a special visit, please call 828-765-0229, ext. 506.

Visiting Application

You must complete an application and have it approved before visiting your inmate. The inmate is required to send you a blank application for each adult and minor who wishes to visit. After you complete your application, you must return it to the Avery-Mitchell Correctional Institution.

Click here for more detailed information about visiting an inmate at a North Carolina correctional facility.

Dress Code

You must follow the visitors dress code or you will not be allowed to visit with your inmate. All visitors are required to wear shirts and closed-toed shoes (no flip-flops or stilettos).

All visitors must successfully satisfy the metal detection, and pat and frisk procedures. Proper identification for adults and children must be provided. All identification cards must be current. 

Bags and purses are not allowed in the visiting room. You can bring in small denomination bills and change to purchase food and drinks from the vending machines.  

  • Halter tops, bare midriffs, strapless tops, tube tops, bodysuits, underwear-type T-shirts, tank tops, or sleeveless shirts or dresses that are inappropriately revealing (a sleeveless shirt or dress is considered inappropriately revealing when the female breast or lingerie can be seen), fishnet shirts, or any type of shirt or pants made with see-through fabric are NOT allowed to be worn by any visitor (male or female).
  • Visitors may wear Bermuda-length shorts provided they are not more than three inches above the kneecap.
  • Females may wear dresses or skirts, but they may not be more than three inches above the kneecap. Slits in skirts and dresses may not be more than three inches above the kneecap. Dresses and skirts for pre-teens may be shorter than three inches above the kneecap.
  • Any shirt or other articles of clothing with a picture or language that may be considered profane or offensive by current public standards or Adult Correction standards, or considered STG (gang) related will not be allowed.
  • Wave caps, doo rags, and bandanas are not allowed.
  • Slacks and pants are to be worn at or above the waist.
  • Spandex clothing is prohibited.

Physical Address

Avery-Mitchell Correctional Institution
600 Amity Park Road
Spruce Pine, NC 28777

Driving Directions: https://goo.gl/maps/7jkx5GQ8rzr4s7C97

General Phone Number

​(828) 765-0229

Inmate Mailing Address(es)

Inmate Name, OPUS Number
Avery-Mitchell Correctional Institution
600 Amity Park Road
Spruce Pine, NC 28777

Remember to address all inmate mail so that the full name and OPUS number of the inmate appears on the envelope. For information about sending packages to an inmate, click here.

How to Call an Inmate

Inmates at Avery-Mitchell Correctional Institution can’t receive incoming calls, but they usually have access to phones during daytime hours. For complete details on how to call an inmate in North Carolina, please click here.

How to Send Money

You can send money to your inmate at Avery-Mitchell through JPay and MoneyGram. All North Carolina state prisons require that you be on the inmate’s approved visitor list to send funds.

The fastest way to send money with your credit or debit card is online using JPay.com. Or, download the JPay mobile app from the Apple App Store (for iPhones) or Google Play (for Android phones).

You can also send money by phone using your credit or debit card. Call (800) 574-5729 to speak with a live JPay call center agent 24/7.

Money Orders
Money orders must be made payable to JPay and sent with a deposit slip to: 
P.O. Box 173070
Hialeah, FL 33017

Money order deposit slip available in English here.
Hoja de Depósito para Giros Bancarios disponible en Español aquí.

To make a cash deposit, visit any MoneyGram agent location (including all Walmarts and CVS Pharmacies), and use code 1224. Visit JPay.com to get a list of nearby MoneyGram locations.

Programs For Inmates

Offender assignments include working for the North Carolina Department of Transportation, as well as the prison's kitchen, clothes house, maintenance, and janitorial positions. Inmates can also participate in the educational and vocational training offered through Mayland Community College.

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Careers at Avery-Mitchell Correctional Institution

The North Carolina Department of Public Safety is currently hiring. If you would like to work at the Avery-Mitchell Correctional Institution, you can find out more information by clicking here.