Frequent Questions

Juvenile Mail

How can I send mail to a juvenile committed to the DOC?

All incoming and outgoing correspondence is processed through the mailroom of the applicable facility. All correspondence must bear the name and full address of the sender on the outside of the envelope/package.

All correspondence must be sent via the United States Postal Service or UPS pursuant to facility rules, and will not be passed through staff, visitors or other offenders.

Address the mail to the juvenile in care of the program the juvenile is in. The following is a list of the state juvenile correctional facilities and the location of the facilities:

STAR Academy Intake and Holding Center, RR1 Box 98, Custer, SD 57730-9647

Living Center, RR 1 Box 98, Custer, SD 57730-9647

Youth Challenge Center, RR 1 Box 98, Custer, SD 57730-9647

Patrick Henry Brady Academy, RR 1 Box 98, Custer, SD 57730-9647

Q.U.E.S.T., HC 83, Box 69B, Custer, SD 57730-9705

E.X.C.E.L., HC 83, Box 69A, Custer, SD 57730-9705

Are there restrictions on correspondence a juvenile can receive?

Yes. They include, but are not limited to:

Juveniles cannot send or receive correspondence from any inmate housed in a correctional facility or from juveniles committed to the DOC unless the other person is an immediate family member. The CEO of the program/facility must authorize correspondence with family members housed in other DOC facilities.

Juveniles cannot receive free advertising materials, fliers, non-subscriptive third class/bulk rate mail, non-subscriptive or free catalogues or pamphlets. Those items will not be delivered.

Juveniles can also not receive postage stamps, envelopes, stickers, maps, calendars, Polaroid photos, cards or postcards, musical cards or homemade craft items.

Correspondence can be rejected if it contains such things as contraband, instruction for the manufacture of a weapon, explosive, drug or alcoholic beverage, advocates violence, violates postal regulations (threats, blackmail, extortion or other violations), includes sexually explicit pictures or writing or contains information that is not conducive to the juvenile's rehabilitation.

Is incoming mail subject to search?

Yes. General correspondence is opened, inspected, and logged by staff. Staff will open any privileged/legal mail and inspect for contraband in the presence of the juvenile. Staff will not read privileged/legal mail.

Can I send money in to a juvenile?

Juveniles in care of the DOC can receive business/payroll checks, cashier's checks and/or money orders. They cannot receive cash. Money sent in to a juvenile will be placed in their institutional account.

Juveniles cannot receive money from another juvenile, another juvenile's family or from a third party on behalf of another juvenile.

Are juveniles allowed to send letters?

Yes. The DOC will pay for a limited amount of out-going mail each week in accordance with policy or operational memorandums.

Do juveniles committed to DOC have access to email?