Estes Unit

The Sanders "Sandy" Estes Unit is a private minimum-security prison for male inmates that is located in Venus, Texas. This facility is operated by the Management Training Corporation (MTC) and can house a maximum of 1,040 inmates. 

MTC prepares incarcerated men to successfully return to their communities. Nearly all of the men incarcerated at Sanders Estes Unit will eventually be released. It’s MTC’s responsibility to provide a wide range of educational, vocational, substance abuse, cognitive behavioral, and life skills programs to prepare these men to successfully return to their communities.

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Estes Unit

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Visiting Hours and Rules

The visiting hours at the Estes Unit are on Saturdays and Sundays from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm. 

Each inmate is allowed one visit per weekend with a maximum of two (2) adults, ages 18 and older. Children ages 17 and younger may visit without being counted in the visitor number. 

Please call the Ombudsman Visitation Hotline at (936) 437-4927 or toll free at (844) 476-1289 if you have questions. The hotline is open Saturdays and Sundays from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm. 

Visiting Applications

Before you can visit an inmate at Estes Unit, you must submit a visiting application and get approval from the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. The visiting application and instructions are below.

Dress Code

If you are not dressed appropriately, you will not be allowed to visit with your inmate. 

  • Sandals, flip-flops, and open-toe shoes are allowed
  • Clothing that is tight fitting, revealing, or made with see-through fabrics is prohibited
  • Sleeveless shirts and dresses are allowed but must cover the shoulders
  • Shorts and skirts no shorter than three inches above the middle of the knee while standing, capri pants, or long pants are allowed
  • Length is not restricted for pre-adolescent boys and girls, generally ages 10 and younger
  • Clothing with pictures or language that may be considered profane or offensive is prohibited

For a complete list of the visiting rules, click here.

What can you bring to a visit?

The only items allowed inside the visiting room are:

  • A small wallet, clear plastic bag, or change purse
  • $25 cash (in coins) for the vending machines
  • Visitors with infants or small children may bring no more than three diapers, a supply of baby wipes, and two baby bottles (“sippy” cup for toddlers). These items must be stored in a clear plastic bag.

Visitors 18 years of age and older must have photo identification (ID) is required.

All other items must be kept in your vehicle. Visitors are not allowed to bring any electronic devices into the visiting room.

Physical Address

Estes Unit
1100 Highway 1807
Venus, Texas 76084

Driving Directions:

General Phone Number

(972) 366-3334

Inmate Mailing Address(es)

Inmate Name/DOC Number
Estes Unit
1100 Highway 1807
Venus, Texas 76084


Inmates can receive incoming eMessages. To register, please contact JPAY at 1-866-333- 5729 or on the web.

How to Call an Inmate

You can't call an inmate at Estes Unit, but they do have access to phones during certain hours. For complete details on how to call an inmate in Texas, please click here.

How to Send Money

The most popular ways to send money to an inmate at Estes Unit are:


Click here and enter offender number, name and confirm offender. Add deposit amount to your cart and checkout using a Visa, MasterCard, or Discover card for a service fee.

MONEY ORDERS or CASHIER’S CHECKS made payable to “Inmate Trust Fund for Offender Name and Number” 

  • You may obtain deposit slips from offender or send a self-addressed, stamped envelope to: Inmate Trust Fund, PO Box 60, Huntsville, TX 77342-0060 
  • Send deposit and completed deposit slip to Inmate Trust Fund, PO Box 60, Huntsville, TX 77342-0060


1. Visit 

2. Telephone (toll-free): 1.866.345.1884 for live bilingual agents available 24/7 

3. Cash Walk-In at most stores available from 8am to 9pm, some 24/7 

4. Visit or call 1.844.340.2274 to enroll, find locations, or get your barcode for Dollar GeneralDeposits 

5. Send money with Debit Card or Cash at Dollar General; new barcode system required

JPAY allows you to send money to an offender for a service fee. Visit their website at or call 1.800.574.5729 to send funds using Visa or MasterCard credit/debit card.

Programs For Inmates


  • Adult Basic Education 
  • General Education Development 
  • Hill College Computer Applications 
  • Math and Science Tutoring


  • CDL 
  • Computer Applications 
  • Culinary Arts
  • Commercial Housekeeping
  • Logistics 
  • Cedar Valley College: HVAC 
  • Maintenance 
  • NCCER Courses 
  • Plumbing 
  • P.A.W.S. of HOPE 
  • PEP Program 

Substance Abuse

  • Alcoholics Anonymous 
  • Celebrate Recovery 
  • Narcotics Anonymous 

Life Skills

  • Anger Management 
  • Changes 
  • Financial Peace University 
  • Inside Out Dads 
  • Money Smart 
  • Marriage & Family Training 
  • Re-Entry 
  • Thinking for a Change 
  • Walk Tall 


  • Individual Counseling 


  • Bible Study 
  • Faith-Based Dorm 
  • Wild at Heart 


  • Veterans Support Group

Pictures of Estes Unit

Careers at Estes Unit

If you are interested in a career with the Management Training Corporation and would like more information about available jobs at Estes Unit, click here.