Inmate US Postal Mail Policy

Mail Scanning
Beginning mid July 2022, the Orange County Detention Center will begin using a mail scanning service. All general mail sent to inmates by a family member or friend must be sent to an outside processing center to be scanned electronically. Scanned mail will be returned to the detention center and will be reviewed for content that may threaten the safety and security of the detention center or others. Mail that is approved for delivery will be saved to the inmates account and is accessible to the inmate on tablet devices. If mail is disapproved, this information will be provided to the inmate, but the inmate will not be able to see the contents of disapproved mail.

General Mail Address (Mail from Family Members & Friends)
All incoming mail from family members and friends must be sent to the below address to be scanned. Please inform your family members and friends to address all incoming mail to you, as follows:


Orange County NC Detention Center
Inmate Name, Inmate ID #
P.O. Box 2925
PMB 79078
San Antonio, TX 78299-2925

The envelope must have a complete, legible return address that includes the sender's first and last name and full address or the mail will not be scanned. The sender is responsible for the cost of postage. Mail with insufficient postage will be refused. All addresses, names, and ID numbers must be printed clearly. Illegible mail will not be scanned and will NOT be returned.

Example Envelope

US Postal Mail Example.jpg

Privileged/Legal Mail Address
Privileged/legal mail must be mailed directly to the facility and not to the processing center. Privileged/legal mail is to be addressed, as follows:

Orange County NC Detention Center
Inmate Name, Inmate ID #
1200 US 70 West
Hillsborough, NC 27278

All privileged/legal mail sent to and inmate will be delivered to the inmate by an officer and will be opened in your presence. Any fasteners, e.g., staples, paperclips, etc., will be removed. Officers can scan your privileged mail to verify that it is, in fact, privileged/legal mail. Officers will not read the inmates  privileged/legal mail.

Mail Item Requirements
All general mail from family members and friends must meet the following requirements:


  • Must have proper postage. If mail arrives as “Postage Due,” the mail will be refused and will be returned to sender.

  • Must contain no more than ten (10) pages per envelope. Individual drawings and photographs are considered as a page.

  • Page size must be no larger than 8.5"x 11".

  • Mail can be written or typed and can contain no more than five (5) photographs or drawings.

  • Greeting cards are also allowed but must be sent individually. (Refer to the next section for additional information.)

What Not to Send

  • Greeting cards, letters, and envelopes containing glitter, glue, tape, or other adhesives, 3-D elements, or electronic components such as lights, music, animation, etc. These items will not be scanned and will be discarded.

  • Original documents such as birth certificates, driver’s licenses, social security cards, green cards, etc., are not to be sent to the processing center. These items will not be returned.

  • Cash, personal checks, or money orders should not be mailed to the processing center.

  • Publications (books, newspapers, and magazines) or any package should not be sent to the processing center.

  • Polaroid™ pictures should not be sent to the processing center and will be discarded.

  • Original photographs and drawings will not be returned. Senders are encouraged to send photocopied versions of photographs and drawings, when possible.

  • Envelopes with drawings, messages, doodles, symbols, or other markings should not be sent.

Mail Approval
All scanned mail will be electronically delivered to the detention center and will be inspected and must be approved for delivery to inmates. Approved mail will be electronically distributed to inmates  and can be read on inmate tablets.

Mail that includes any of the following will NOT be approved for distribution and can be turned over to the proper authorities for investigation. Any threats of criminal activity or evidence of criminal activity in any correspondence can result in criminal charges. Inform your family and friends of this information and advise them not to send mail that contains any of the following:


  • Threats of physical harm against a person(s);

  • Threats of blackmail or extortion;

  • Plans for escape;

  • Plans for activities in violation of facility rules;

  • Anything written in code or in an unidentifiable language;

  • Content, graphics, or photographs depicting or describing gang-related activities, symbols, gestures, and colors;

  • Content, graphics, or photographs displaying nudity or sexual violence or the use of illegal substances or alcohol;

  • Content, drawings, or photographs describing or depicting illegal activities and/or the use or display of weapons; and

  • Any other Information that, if communicated, would create a clear and present danger of violence and physical harm to another person or would jeopardize the safety and security and routine operations of the detention center.

Family members and friends can purchase publications (books, magazines, and newspapers) from a recognized publisher or distribution center for direct delivery to you at the detention center. All publications are to be sent directly to the detention center and not to the outside processing center. Advise your family members and friends to use the detention center’s address and to address all publications the same as privileged/legal mail. (See the example provided above.)
All publications must meet the following requirements:


  • Only one (1) publication can be included in each envelope or box.

  • All publications must be new, not used.

  • All publications must be soft-covered or paperback. No hardcover publications are allowed.

  • Publications that are received that contain staples or other metal fasteners must be able to be easily removed. If fasteners cannot be removed, the publication will not be approved.

  • Publications will be screened for content, graphics, or pictures that may jeopardize the safety and security of the facility or others. Publications that contain any of the following will not be provided to you:

    • Pornographic or sexually violent material, graphics, or photographs;

    • Instructions on how to commit a crime or instructions for making weapons, incendiary devices, alcohol, smoking products, or other forms of contraband;

    • Any unidentifiable language or materials written in symbols or codes;

    • Instructions on how to affect an escape or instructional manuals for security related equipment used at the detention center, e.g., instructional manuals for detention center locking systems, surveillance cameras, etc.

    • Instructions or information that can be used to violate any detention center rules and regulations

    • Information that may cause another inmate or another person to be subject to harm, harassment, or threats of harm.

If a magazine or newspaper subscription is purchased for an inmate, it is the inmates or the purchaser’s responsibility to cancel the subscription when you are released. Magazines and newspapers received after you are released will not be forwarded to you or to the purchaser and are not the responsibility of the detention center.

Checks, Cash, and Money Orders
Friends and family members are NOT to send any cash (bills or coins), money orders, or checks to the detention center for deposit to your account. Funds can be deposited by family members, friends, or others using the on-link provided on the detention center’s website under the “Inmate Accounts” tab. A valid credit or debit card must be used to make a deposit through this link. Family members, friends, and others can also deposit U.S. currency (U.S. bills or coins; no foreign currency) or can use a credit or debit card to deposit funds to your account using the public commissary kiosk located in the public lobby of the detention center.