United States Penitentiary Lewisburg is a medium-security federal prison located in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania. It is also known as USP Lewisburg. USP Lewisburg Camp is located adjacent to the main institution. Both facilities house male inmates.
Table of contents
- USP Lewisburg Contact Information
- United States Penitentiary Lewisburg Inmate Information
- USP Lewisburg Prison Services Information
- USP Lewisburg Educational, Library, and Recreation Offerings
- Visitation Information for USP Lewisburg
- USP Lewisburg in the News
- More Information About United States Penitentiary Lewisburg
USP Lewisburg Contact Information
Facility Address & Contact Information
United States Penitentiary Lewisburg
2400 Robert F. Miller Drive
Lewisburg, PA 17837
Email: [email protected]
Inmate Correspondence Address
Inmate Name and Registration Number
United States Penitentiary
P.O. Box 1000
Lewisburg, PA 17837
USP Lewisburg Camp
Inmate Name and Registration Number
USP Lewisburg Camp
Satellite Prison Camp
P.O. Box 2000
Lewisburg, PA 17837
How to Send Money
Funds cannot be sent directly to inmates. See our page on sending money to federal prisoners.
United States Penitentiary Lewisburg Inmate Information
Prison Security Level
USP Lewisburg is located in central Pennsylvania, 200 miles north of Washington D.C.; 170 miles north of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; and 70 miles north of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. The institution is located approximately 2 miles off of U.S. Route 15.
BOP Institution Code
LEW for USP Lewisburg
Medical Care Level
Level 2. See our page on Medical Care Levels and Procedures for more information.
Mental Health Care Level
Middle District of Pennsylvania
USP Lewisburg houses approximately 590 inmates. The camp houses around 300 inmates.
USP Lewisburg Prison Services Information
United States Penitentiary Lewisburg is a medium-security federal prison located in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania. It was opened in 1932. United States Penitentiary Lewisburg Camp is located adjacent to the main institution. Both institutions house male inmates.
USP Lewisburg was one of four federal prisons to open in 1932. As of 2009, Lewisburg federal prison was designated as a Special Management Unit (SMU) intended to house the most violent and disruptive inmates in the Bureau of Prisons. Although most Lewisburg Penitentiary inmates are housed in the SMU, there remains a work cadre of approximately 200 inmates in the USP’s general population. The Bureau has publicly stated that the SMU is being moved to AUSP Thomson in late 2018, but that institution’s activation has been delayed.
Lewisburg Federal Penitentiary has been the subject of lawsuits concerning conditions of confinement and lack of psychological treatment, as well as the subject of numerous reports detailing a significant level of violence at the facility. A joint investigation by NPR and The Marshall Project found that United States Penitentiary Lewisburg has six times more inmate-on-inmate assaults than other federal prisons.
Media reports indicate that there have been ten inmate murders, at least one suicide, at least one assault that required hospitalization, one unspecified death, one ordered gang hit, and over 800 fights since 2010. At least five inmates have been charged with weapon possession and one guard has been charged with theft of government property. One guard was also killed while transporting an inmate to a hospital.
Ironically, in 2012, CNBC named USP Lewisburg Camp one of the 12 best federal prisons in which to do time.
- USP: two-person cells
- Camp: dormitories
USP Lewisburg Health Services department provides care including:
- Preventive Health Care
- Medical/Dental sick call
- Physical Examinations
Emergency care is available 24 hours a day. Routine care requires submission of a sick call form.
Psychology staff provide care in various areas including:
- Crisis intervention
- Self-Help Library
Inmates must contact Psychology Services in writing or during an open house period to request services. In the camp, Psychology staff are available for crisis intervention and brief counseling as deemed necessary. Psychology also performs mental health evaluations by staff referral. The Health Services department works with Psychology Services to access the need for psychotropic medication. Group therapy and mental health classes are made available as time permits.
Residential Drug Abuse Program (RDAP)
United States Penitentiary Lewisburg camp has the Residential Drug Abuse Program (RDAP), but the main institution does not. Drug Education Classes and the Non-Residential Drug Abuse Program (NR-DAP) are also offered.
USP Lewisburg Educational, Library, and Recreation Offerings
USP Lewisburg provides literacy, GED, and English-as-a-Second Language (ESL) programs. A parenting program and Adult Continuing Education (ACE) classes are also available. High school diplomas and post-secondary degrees are available through paid correspondence programs.
Advanced Occupational Education
USP Lewisburg offers advanced occupational education in Business English/Information, Business English/Reading, Business Math, and Computer Fundamentals. The camp offers Desktop Publishing and Graphic Arts.
USP Lewisburg and the camp do not offer any vocational training, aside from the advanced occupational education and apprenticeship programs.
USP Lewisburg offers apprenticeships in Commercial Housekeeping, Electrical, HVAC, and Plumbing. The camp does not offer any apprenticeship programs.
Law and leisure libraries are open to inmates at Lewisburg federal penitentiary. The law library provides legal research and legal document preparation. Typewriters are provided for typing legal documents. Inmate law clerks are on duty to assist in locating legal references. The leisure library contains around 4,000 volumes, including magazines, newspapers, periodicals, fiction and nonfiction books, and reference books. The leisure library also contains a Hispanic library, including various books, magazines, and newspapers.
USP Lewisburg and the camp house UNICOR facilities.
Commissary spending is limited to $360.00 per month. Inmates may only shop on their assigned day once per week. Shoes, hygiene items, candy, and various shelf stable foods are available for purchase.
Leisure and recreation programs at USP Lewisburg include indoor and outdoor areas. Leisure activities include:
- Table Tennis.
- Music Room
- Talent Shows
The Arts & Crafts Program offers various programs:
- Leather Craft
- Acrylic Painting
- Glass Painting
- Pastel Drawing
Crafts must take place in the hobby shop area except for pencil and ink sketching and crocheting, which are permitted in quarters. A General Public Arts & Crafts Sale is available for marketing products finished through Arts & Crafts. Structured leagues in the Spring/Summer include basketball, bocce ball, horseshoes, sand volleyball, tennis, handball, soccer, and softball. In the Fall/Winter they include chess, dominoes, flag football, ping-pong, pinochle, pool, softball, and spades.
Visitation Information for USP Lewisburg
On Sunday and Saturday visiting hours are between 8:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. On federal holidays visiting hours are between 8:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. See our page on prisoner visitation rules for more information.
USP Lewisburg in the News
In June 2018, the Bureau of Prisons stated that the Special Management Unit (SMU) at Lewisburg federal penitentiary would be moved to AUSP Thomson beginning in late 2018. It was not clear whether several lawsuits alleging mistreatment and torture in the SMU were a factor in the decision.
In May 2018, Richard Haynes, who was a prisoner at USP Lewisburg for less than a week, was found unresponsive in his cell and pronounced dead at a local hospital.
In February 2018, a total of five prisoners at USP Lewisburg were separately indicted for weapons possession: Jose Capriata, Lenelle Gray, Jorge Lopez-Cruz, Michael Moore, and Ernie Joseph Sandoval.
In July 2017, a report by the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of the Inspector General singled out USP Lewisburg in its criticism of the Bureau’s failure to track the time prisoners spend in “restrictive housing” and its mistreatment of mentally ill prisoners.
In June 2017, the DC Prisoner’s Project of the Washington Lawyer’s Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs filed a class action lawsuit against USP Lewisburg arguing that mentally ill prisoners were being given crossword and Sudoku puzzles, as well as coloring books, instead of counseling, treatment, and medications.
In 2016, an investigation by NPR and the Marshall Project found that USP Lewisburg had six times as many prisoner-on-prisoner assaults than all other federal prisons, making it one of the most dangerous prisons in America. Federal incident report data showed that guards used pepper spray or restraints in response to 228 in-cell fights. There have been more than 800 recorded prisoner-on-prisoner assaults, with four prisoners killed, since 2010.
In November 2015, a report issued by the District of Columbia Corrections Information Council (CIC), an independent oversight group, noted that excessive force complaints at USP Lewisburg far outweigh those at other federal prisons where DC prisoners are housed. While the DC prisoners alleged unprovoked attacks in areas where there are no cameras, the BOP claimed that none of these incidents were reported or substantiated. The CIC made several recommendations for installing more cameras, reducing the time prisoners are kept in isolation, and increasing independent monitoring of staff.
In October 2015, Gerardo Arche-Felix, a prisoner at USP Lewisburg who had been pleading with guards, staff, and his family to get himself moved, was strangled to death in his cell with a bedsheet. Arche’s cellmate, Jose Hernandez-Vasquez, was charged with first-degree murder.
In August 2015, Jimmy Barker, a prisoner at USP Lewisburg, died after a fight with his cellmate.
In May 2015, Javier Oswaldo Jovel-Aguilar, a prisoner at USP Lewisburg incarcerated as a result of an expired visa, was sentenced to 30 additional years in prison after beating his cellmate, Arnold Smith, to death. The assault occurred in June 2010.
In April 2015, Renell Wooten, a prisoner at USP Lewisburg, who was only four months from release and expressed worries about being killed before he could get out and see his family again, was found dead in his cell, hanged by a bedsheet.
In March 2015, a prisoner at USP Lewisburg was assaulted by his cellmate, requiring treatment at an outside medical facility.
In 2015, Randall Spade, a prison guard at USP Lewisburg, sued the Department of Justice for negligence upon learning that they released his personal information to prisoners, unredacted, through a standard public records request.
In February 2013, Fred Hagenbuch, a senior officer specialist at USP Lewisburg, pleaded guilty to illegally removing property, such as electrical conduit, fencing, and fence posts, from FCI Allenwood.
In late 2012, Andrew Cervantes, a Nuestra Familia gang member who was imprisoned at USP Lewisburg, ordered the murder of an inmate at USP McCreary. The inmate was assaulted and stabbed in March 2013 but survived.
In December 2011, the Pennsylvania Institutional Law Project filed a lawsuit against USP Lewisburg on behalf of prisoner Sebastian Richardson, who suffered being tightly shackled for weeks at a time because he refused to accept violent cellmates.
In July 2010, Adam Martin, a prisoner at USP Lewisburg, was killed after getting into a fight with another prisoner.
Between 2008 and July 2011, there were 272 prisoner-on-prisoner assaults reported at USP Lewisburg.
In January 1998, Jesse Tharp, a guard at USP Lewisburg, was indicted on charges of having indecent contact with a child under the age of eight and a child under the age of five on federal property outside the prison.
In 1997, Lewisburg federal penitentiary prisoners Abdul Salaam and Frank Joyner were stabbed to death in a fight that left four other prisoners injured.
In October 1987, Robert F. Miller, a senior officer at USP Lewisburg, was shot and killed in an ambush as he and three other guards were transporting a prisoner to the hospital.
More Information About United States Penitentiary Lewisburg
For a comprehensive look at life in federal prison, pick up a copy of Christopher Zoukis’ Federal Prison Handbook: The Definitive Guide to Surviving the Federal Bureau of Prisons. For more detailed information about USP Lewisburg, please buy a copy of the Directory of Federal Prisons: The Unofficial Guide to Bureau of Prisons Institutions by Christopher Zoukis.
Published May 17, 2018 by Christopher Zoukis, JD, MBA | Last Updated by Christopher Zoukis, JD, MBA on May 5, 2022 at 10:00 pm