Clothing

Inmates in Orange County jails are issued one set of used, jail-issue clothing upon arrival.  No outside clothing is permitted.  Working inmates are given jeans and a button-up, Dickies style work shirt to wear.  Non-working inmates wear a one-piece, bright yellow-orange jumpsuit.

Most inmates suggest using bail if you have access to it, since you will have the advantage of wearing your own clothing to court.  Judges may subconsciously pre-judge you as a criminal if you appear before them in an ill-fitting, jail-issued jumpsuit.

Since the Orange County jail system is noted for its attention to hygiene otherwise, many people are surprised to learn that the jail requires inmates to use a toilet to launder their clothing.  Inmates are required to personally wash their clothing, including underwear, in a specially designated toilet.  Despite the fact that the toilet used to wash clothing is used exclusively for that purpose, it is degrading to have inmates wear something that was washed in a toilet.  After washing, clothes are hung in the dorms to dry.  Getting on a guard's good side can be beneficial here, as some guards will allow inmates to wash their clothing in a sink instead of the toilet.

Inmates are allowed one exchange of or addition to personal clothing during their incarceration period.  A clothing exchange is only permitted in the event that existing clothing is not suitable to be worn at court, or is otherwise insufficient.  Allowance of more than one clothing item requires a court order on file.  Inmates pending an in-custody release to state prison are typically not eligible for a clothing exchange, barring special circumstances.

Clothing brought in for addition or exchange will be thoroughly searched for contraband.  Any contraband found in the clothing will be immediately reported to the Operations Sergeant on duty.  Clothing items must be clean, and ready to be hung in storage.  “One for one” exchanges are preferred; an old pair of shoes for a new one, for example. 

If bringing in clothing for an exchange, visitors must first go to the visiting/reception guard station.  Request a Property Release Authorization Form (Form J-025) from the Deputy or SSO on duty, and fill it out in triplicate.  The information required on the form includes the inmate's name, booking number, housing location, the day's date, time and information about the person bringing in clothing for exchange.