Legal Dictionary


West Valley Detention Center

Visiting Hours

If you plan to visit an inmate at the West Valley Detention Center, in Rancho Cucamonga, California, you should know that it is one of the largest jails in California—housing up to 3,347 inmates. Therefore, it is likely to be very busy on the day you choose to visit. You must call to schedule your visit at least one day in advance; and, you should arrive at least 30 minutes before your scheduled visit.

You may visit an inmate at the West Valley Detention Center, which is also known as the San Bernardino County Jail, Wednesday through Sunday from 8:30 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. Before visiting an inmate, you must call the San Bernardino Sheriff's Department Centralized Visiting Appointment Center at 909-887-0364 to schedule your visitation. The Appointment Center is open Tuesday through Saturday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. When you reach the Appointment Center, a scheduler will tell you whether the inmate you plan to visit is eligible for visits. To reach the West Valley Detention Center directly, call 909-350-2476.

Attorneys and bails bondsmen may visit the West Valley Detention Center at any time. Members of the clergy should call the Glen Helen Rehabilitation Center at 909-473-1761 during regular business hours to schedule a visit with an inmate.

The West Valley Detention Center, operated by the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department, primarily houses pre-sentenced county inmates. The West Valley Detention also houses sentenced inmate workers and federal inmates.

Visiting Procedures

Inmates at the West Valley Detention Center are allowed to have one 20 minute visit per day. Up to five (5) persons may visit an inmate at one time. Children are counted as visitors.


9500 Etiwanda Avenue, Rancho Cucamonga, California, 91739. Parking is available at the West Valley Detention Center.

Booking Information

You may also obtain information about a person who has been arrested and taken to the West Valley Detention Center by calling the San Bernardino County Public Information Line at 909-350-2476 at any time. To get information about any inmate online or to perform an "out of custody search," go to the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department Inmate Locator at

Visitor Restrictions

Only visitors with a valid photo ID will be allowed to visit inmates at the West Valley Detention Center. Acceptable forms of ID include:

  • Valid California Identification Card
  • Valid Driver's License (any state)
  • U.S. Military Identification Card
  • Valid Passport/Visa
  • Alien Registration Card
  • Mexican Consulate Card
  • Permanent Resident Card
  • Valid School Identification Card or Birth Certificate (if visitor is a minor who is 12 or over)
  • Other Valid U.S. Government Identification Card.

Officers at the West Valley Detention Center may deny visitation rights to anyone for any number of reasons. Visitors with outstanding warrants, traffic or parking tickets should not visit the West Valley Detention Center, as they may be subject to immediate arrest. Ex-felons, persons on probation and persons formerly incarcerated in State prison must contact the Watch Commander to first obtain approval to visit an inmate at the West Valley Detention Center.

Telephone Access & Mail

During booking, the person being held in the West Valley Detention Center, ("the arrestee"), may be allowed to make free telephone calls. Arrestees/Inmates may not receive calls or phoned-in messages, but may make collect calls or use calling cards once housed.

You may send mail addressed to an inmate at the West Valley Detention Center to:

[Inmates Name & Booking Number]
9500 Etiwanda Avenue
Rancho Cucamonga, California, 91739

Picking Up Personal Property

Any time after arrest, an arrestee/inmate may authorize the release of his personal property to anyone unless that property has been entered into evidence. If the property has been entered into evidence, it will not be available until the criminal case is completed. The person picking up the inmate's personal property must present a valid California ID or an ID from an acceptable source. To obtain the release of an arrestee's vehicle, contact the arresting agency who will provide you with the name of the towing company that you will need to contact to learn if the vehicle has been impounded or not. If you need to obtain a car key that was in an inmate's possession at the time of arrest, contact the West Valley Detention Center at 909-350-2476 to obtain a property release form signed by the inmate releasing the key to you.

Getting Money to an Inmate

In order for an inmate to purchase any item from the West Valley Detention Center's commissary, the Jail's store, an inmate must have "money on the books." If at the time of booking, an inmate has money in his possession, that money will be placed into the inmate's "bank account" or on the inmate's books unless the inmate's money has been entered into evidence. An inmate may use his money on the books to purchase goods such as toiletries, snacks and phone calling cards. To add money to an inmate's books, send a U. S. Postal money order or bank money order to the address below along with the inmate's name and booking number. Cash can be put on an inmate's books but it must be done in person at the West Valley Detention Center. Money orders or bank checks sent via the mail must be signed and made payable to the inmate. Mailed-in money orders or bank checks cannot exceed $200.00. Since the maximum amount an inmate may receive or carry on his books is subject to change, you should contact the West Valley Detention Center at 909-350-2476 before sending or delivering money to the Jail. To put money on an inmate's books by mail, you must mail the money order or bank check to the following address: [Inmates Name & Booking Number], 9500 Etiwanda Avenue, Rancho Cucamonga, California, 91739.

Facility Information

At the West Valley Detention Center, medical and mental health services are provided to inmates from the time of their booking through their release. West Valley Detention Center's Food Services Division offers culinary instructional programs. Inmates who participate in the Food Service Program attain certification in food safety and management.

How to Bail an Inmate Out of Jail

Someone committing a crime in San Bernardino County can be arrested and taken to the West Valley Detention Center to be booked (photographed and fingerprinted) and put in jail temporarily. It is possible for a defendant to be "cited out" and released from the jail after the booking process. Being "cited out" means you are given a written notice to appear in court at a future date. The defendant signs the promise to appear in court and is then given a copy and released. This process may take several hours to complete depending on the number of other defendants to be booked that day or night. These citations are common in cases involving Driving under the Influence (DUI), drunk in public, shoplifting, and minor misdemeanor cases. When a citation is involved, the defendant does not need to post bail.

If a defendant was arrested for a serious misdemeanor or felony matter, it is likely that the defendant will not be released from jail until the defendant or the defendant's family posts bail. If the defendant is not bailed out, he or she will be taken to court within 48 hours of being arrested, not counting the weekend. Bail means three things:

  1. The release of the defendant from jail;
  2. The bondsman; or
  3. The money or security used to secure the defendant's appearance in court.

The amount of bail depends on the type and seriousness of the crime charged against the defendant. The bail is based on a countywide schedule which is available through a bondsman or a criminal defense attorney. If the defendant or his or her family desires to post bail for the release of the defendant, there are three ways to accomplish this:

  1. Cash Bail – Cash, Check, Traveler's Check, or a Money Order must be deposited in the full amount of the bail to the law enforcement agency holding the defendant. Once this is completed, the defendant will be released from the jail and given a future date to appear in court. If the defendant makes all the required court appearances, the bail will be returned except for a small administrative fee. If, however, the defendant fails to make the necessary court appearances, the cash bail is forfeited to the court.
  1. Real Property - The family or the defendant may give any equity in real property for bail. Generally, the equity must be twice the value of the bail required for releasing the defendant. The equity of the property can be forfeited if the defendant fails to make his or her court required appearances.
  1. Bail Bond - This is generally the most popular manner used in Los Angeles County to bail someone out of jail. A defendant or his family posts the bail bond, which is the document given to the court by the arrestee's surety (bail bond company) to guarantee that the defendant will attend all required court appearances. The bail bond company charges a cash premium of 7% to 10% of the bail amount to post the bond. Example: the presumed bail for certain domestic violence charges is $50,000. The premium would be $3500 to $5000. Sometimes this premium can be made in payments to the bail bond company. The percentage charged by the bail bond company is non-refundable. It is the price or premium charged for undertaking the posting of the bail bond with the court. In the event that the defendant does not make the required court appearances and the bond is forfeited to the court, the signor (defendant, friend, or family member) of the bail bond will be responsible for paying the entire bail amount back to the bail bonds company.

Before bailing someone out of jail, you should consult with an experienced Los Angeles Criminal Defense Attorney to learn what your options are. Often, family members rush to bail someone out and then learn at the first court appearance (the arraignment) that the bail was increased because more charges were added to the criminal complaint. When that occurs, the defendant can be taken back to jail until the new bail is posted. It is tricky. That is why it is better to consult an attorney before you post bail. An experienced attorney will tell you the positives and negatives of posting bail at any specific time. If it is necessary, we will refer you to a reputable bail bonds company. We regularly obtain the release of many of our clients without posting bail. This saves the client or the family a lot of money, which in turn can be applied to fighting and defending the criminal case.