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The Stewart Detention Center is an ICE detention facility located in Lumpkin, Georgia, approximately 145 miles south of Atlanta. The detention facility is one of the largest in capacity, housing 1,497 ICE detainees on an average daily basis. The only immigration facilities with comparable numbers of inmates are South Texas and Eloy. The Stewart Detention Center is owned and operated by the Corrections Corporation of America, which has agreed to house adult inmates at the facility pursuant to an IGSA with ICE. The facility is sometimes referred to as CCA Stewart Detention Center or the Lumpkin GA Detention Center.
Contacting the Facility
Stewart Detention Center
76 Holder Road
Lumpkin, Georgia 31815
(229)838-5000 (press ’0′ for the operator)
Contacting A Detainee
To speak to a detainee by phone, the inmate must call you. Note: The facility will not pass on messages to detainees. To inform a detainee of when and where to call, you can only write a letter to the person. Also note that inmates are not allowed free phone calls to family and friends. Thus, you must provide the inmate money to purchase a calling card.
To deposit money in the person’s account, you have two options. First, you can send money using using Western Union Quick Collect or by physically dropping off cash at the end of an inmate visit. one 1-hour visit per week, arrive between 9am-3pm.
To visit the person, go to Stewart Detention Center any day of the week between 9am and 3pm. Family and friends are limited to one, 1-hour visit per week.
To send mail to the person, use the following address:
Inmate Name, Alien Number, Booking Number
Stewart Detention Center
622 Main Street, SW
Gainesville, Georgia 30501
Contacting Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)
The ICE deportation office is located inside the Stewart Detention Center. To reach an ICE officer, call (229)838-1105, and press ’2′. Have available the person’s alien number so that you can be routed to the correct deportation officer. The ICE officer overseeing the Stewart detainees is Assistant Field Office Director David Bryant. He reports to Field Office Director Felicia S. Skinner at the Atlanta ERO Field Office. To reach the Atlanta Field Office, call (404)893-1210.
Often, immigrants held at the Stewart Detention Center are eligible for release on an immigration bond. To find out if ICE deems him eligible, call the Stewart ICE office at (229)838-1105 and ask to speak to the deportation officer assigned to the person’s case. Sometimes a person is eligible for bond, but ICE disagrees. Therefore, even if ICE denies release on bond, you may want to hire an immigration lawyer to better understand your options.
To post bond, go to any ICE ERO Field Office in the United States. However, Stewart detainees are usually released in the shortest amount of time when bond is posted at the Atlanta ERO Field Office:
Atlanta ERO Field Office
180 Spring Street SW
Atlanta, Georgia 30303
Only US citizens and lawful permanent residents are allowed to post bond for an immigration detainee.
The Removal Process
Stewart detainees are almost always placed in removal proceedings by ICE. This is where ICE makes allegations that a person is removable, and then attempts to prove these allegations. Most of the time, the immigrant detainee has the opportunity to defend against these allegations, or to prove eligibility for relief from deportation.
Inmates at the Stewart Detention Center are heard by the Atlanta Immigration Court. While the judge and attorneys physically appear in Atlanta, the Stewart detainees communicate through televideo from the facility. There are four Atlanta judges who are randomly assigned to cases at Stewart:
- Judge Earle Wilson
- Judge Dan J. Pelletier
- Judge Wayne K. Houser, Jr.
- Judge William A. Cassidy
It can take up to 3 weeks, and sometimes longer, for detainees at Stewart to see an immigration judge. The delay is due to ICE’s processing times. Once a detainee sees a judge, however, the average time for case completion at Stewart is relatively quick — only 20 days. This compares to average processing times of 90 days or more at other detention facilities.
The Stewart Detention Facility was built in 2004 and last renovated in 2007. It currently has bed space for 1900 inmates, but holds only around 1,600 adult males. In 2007, an ICE audit revealed that the facility was deficient according to ICE standards. In particular, the facility failed to meet ICE standards for access to medical care. In 2008, the Stewart Detention Center was again found to be non-compliant with medical standards. The auditor recommended that the facility establish a tracking protocol to ensure that detainees received a physical exam within 2 weeks of arrival.
The vast majorities of detainees at Stewart are from Mexico, Honduras, and Guatemala. Statistics show that, on an annual basis, only 3% of Stewart detainees bond out of detention, while close to 83% are removed from the United States.
In May of 2011, a former inmate at Stewart made headlines after being released. Pedro Guzman left the facility after spending 19 months there. He alleged that he witnessed physical and verbal abuse, as well as overcrowding. According to him, 62 detainees were forced to sleep in bunk beds only 2 feet apart. He also reported that ICE officials discouraged detainees from fighting deportation in immigration court.
On November 18, 2011 over 250 protesters held a vigil outside of the Stewart Detention Center. Pedro Guman was in attendance.
If you are having difficulty locating someone at the Stewart Detention Center, you may want to try contacting any the following facilities: