Polk Correctional Institution

Polk Correctional Institution is a close-custody prison for male inmates that is located in Butner, North Carolina. This facility is managed by the North Carolina Department of Public Safety and can house approximately 904 inmates.

Polk Correctional Institution houses offenders in both single cells and dormitories. When Polk opened in 1997, its main mission was to process newly-admitted youthful offenders between the ages of 19 and 21. 

The prison also houses offenders that participate in job assignments and other programs. It is a close-custody prison, but it is also approved to house offenders assigned to maximum control, intensive control, disciplinary segregation and safekeeping status.

Polk's high-security maximum control unit (HCON) opened in October 1998. This high-security concept in correctional design is intended for the state's most violent and assaultive offenders. The "Supermax" (HCON) unit in Butner was the first of its kind in North Carolina.

Due to the demand of prison space, in 2003, Polk's age criteria for offenders changed from 18-21 to 19-25. In October 2005, the facility changed its name from Polk Youth Institution to Polk Correctional Institution to reflect this older population, including the HCON unit.

Polk Correctional Institution officially opened November 15, 1997 when offenders were transferred to the new facility. The new prison in Butner replaced an old unit on Blue Ridge Road in Raleigh. 

The original Polk facility acquired its name in 1920 from Col. William Polk, a decorated officer in the Revolutionary War. It was built on the grounds of Camp Polk, a U.S. Army tank base during World War I. Initially, inmates farmed the site.

Prison Insights

Polk Correctional Institution

Go back

What Do Inmate Families Think?

Go back

What Do Former Inmates Think?

Go back

What Do Employees Think?

Go back
Sorry, there are no insights for this section of the facility yet.
Overall Score = /10
Total Respondents =

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 schedules for offenders housed in Regular Population are conducted by appointment only: Tuesday, Thursday: 1 - 3 p.m.; Saturday: 9 - 11 a.m.

Offenders housed in Administrative Segregation, Disciplinary Segregation, HCON, Protective Custody, and Safekeepers visit by appointment only. These will be non-contact visits.

For more information or to schedule an appointment, please call 919-575-3070, ext. 8903. The appointments are scheduled for one-hour periods as listed below:

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday: 11:45 a.m. - 12:45 p.m., 12:45 - 1:45 p.m ,1:45 - 2:45 p.m

It is the responsibility of the offender to notify his visitors if he is placed in segregation.

Offenders are allowed only one visitation period per week. A maximum of three visitors may visit. All visitors must arrive together and be on the approved visitation list. Any exception to the visitation schedule must be requested in writing and approved at least 24 hours in advance by the superintendent or his designee.

Visiting Application

Before you visit your inmate, you must complete an application and have it approved by the North Carolina Department of Public Safety. It is the inmate’s responsibility to send you a blank application for each adult and minor who wishes to visit. After you fill out your application, return it to the Polk Correctional Institution for approval.

Click here for more detailed information about visiting an inmate at Polk.

Dress Code

All visitors are required to present a current photo ID (all minors are required to present a copy of their birth certificate) before entering the visiting room, and they will be subjected to a search.

Bags and purses, cell phones, cameras, other electronic recording devices, and glass or metal objects are not allowed in the visiting room. You can bring $1 and $5 bills and change to purchase food and drinks from the vending machines.  

All visitors must follow the dress code or they will not be allowed to visit. All visitors must wear shirts and closed-toed shoes (no flip-flops or stilettos).

  • 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.
  • No wave caps, doo rags, and bandanas.
  • Slacks and pants are to be worn at or above the waist.
  • No spandex clothing.

Physical Address

Polk Correctional Institution
1001 Veazey Road
Butner, NC 27509

Driving Directions: https://goo.gl/maps/jomrgNqz8DR3Cb537

General Phone Number


Inmate Mailing Address(es)

Inmate Name, OPUS Number
Polk Correctional Institution
Box 2500
Butner, NC 27509

Polk Correctional Institution encourages family and friends to write to offenders. The inmate’s full name and OPUS number must be on the envelope when you send inmate mail. For information about sending packages to an inmate, click here.

How to Call an Inmate

You can’t call an inmate at the Polk Correctional Institution, but they do have access to phones. 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 Polk Correctional Institution 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 option is to send money with your credit or debit card online by using JPay.com or 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

Inmates at Polk Correctional Institution can work in various job assignments including kitchen, laundry, and custodial maintenance. Inmates can also attend educational classes, receive substance abuse treatment, and participate in various behavioral and therapy programs.

Pictures of Polk Correctional Institution

Careers at Polk Correctional Institution

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