Washington State Penitentiary (also called the Walla Walla State Penitentiary) is a Washington State Department of Corrections men's prison located in Walla Walla, Washington. With an operating capacity of 2200, it is the second largest prison in the state (after Coyote Ridge Corrections Center) and is surrounded by wheat fields. [Visitor's note: It looks as if Airway Heights and Monroe are also larger than WSP (according to Wikipedia's list of WA prisons), which would make WSP the FOURTH largest prison in Washington State.]
It is located at 1313 N. 13th Avenue and is commonly known as "the Walls" among inmates of the Washington Department of Corrections. The penitentiary is sometimes known as Concrete Mama, from a book with the same title, by Ethan Hoffman and John McCoy.
Over a one year period, starting in March 2002, more than one hundred inmates and staff at the Washington State Penitentiary were infected with Campylobacter jejuni. During this period, five clusters of the infection were identified, and genetic testing indicated that all of the bacteria were indistinguishable from each other. The source of this outbreak is not known, but contamination via pigeon feces, as well as unsafe food handling procedures, were examined.[clarification needed]