Baldwin State Prison

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Baldwin State Prison
Location 140 Laying Farm Road
Hardwick, Georgia
Status open
Security class medium
Capacity 925
Opened 1976
Managed by Georgia Department of Corrections

The Baldwin State Prison, previously the Baldwin Correctional Institution and the Georgia Women's Correctional Institution (GWCI), is a prison located in Milledgeville, Georgia, United States. The prison has a capacity of 900.[1] After complaints in the early 1990s by more than 200 women of sexual abuse by guards, an investigation was conducted. More than a dozen guards were prosecuted. The state decided to move the women to other prison facilities for a total change in culture. This facility now houses only adult male felons, with a capacity of 992.

Also on the prison grounds is a boot camp which houses 240. It was constructed and opened in 1979. It was renovated in 1989 and re-opened in 1990. It is a medium security prison.[citation needed] It is a part of the Georgia Department of Corrections.


In 1984 several women at GWCI sued the prison, accusing employees of committing sexual abuse.[2] By September 1, 1992, 70 women at GWCI said that prison guards had sexually abused them.[3] By 1993 over 180 prisoners at GWCI stated that prison guards had sexually abused them.[4]

In the early 1990s, based on affidavits of almost 200 prisoners at GWCI who said they had been abused, more than 12 DOC employees were suspended, fired, and transferred. Several top administrators in the department and several top employees at GWCI were relieved of their positions.[5] As part of the scandal, 15 men and women were indicted on criminal charges of sexually abusing prisoners. Two prison guards pleaded guilty and received probation. A Baldwin County jury acquitted another prison guard. The state dropped charges against the other accused parties.[5] In 1992 Mary Esposito, a native of Waycross, Georgia and the first female warden of an all-male prison in Georgia, took over as the warden of Baldwin State; she had been transferred from the Burruss Correctional Training Center.[1]

Until 1992 the prison housed female death row inmates.[6][7] In 1992 the sentence of the state's only female death row inmate was commuted to life in prison.[8]

In 1993 Governor of Georgia Zell Miller announced that the women from the Georgia Women's Correctional Institution would be moved to the Metro State Prison near Atlanta, which was to be emptied of its male prisoners. The officials scheduled the completion of the swap on July 1, 1993.[4] Lynn Cook of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution said that the swap occurred partly "to get the female inmates out of a culture at Georgia Women’s Correctional Institution that had allowed officers and other workers at the prison to engage in sexual relationships with inmates."[5] The former GWCI was renamed as the Baldwin Correctional Institution and used to house male inmates.[9]

On April 28, 1995, the remaining 30 women at the facility were transferred out. Most of the women were sent to Washington Correctional Institution. Others went to Metro and to the Pulaski Correctional Institution.[10]

Baldwin was one of nine Georgia state prisons implicated in an FBI sting operation announced in February 2016. The agency indicted 47 correction officers who had agreed to deliver illegal drugs while in uniform. These charges were "part of a larger public corruption investigation into Georgia Correctional Facilities".[11]


The prison is located in Milledgeville, Baldwin County, Georgia.[12][13][14] It is in proximity to Hardwick,[1] and south of the center of Milledgeville,[15] in the middle Georgia region.[9] The prison was in a wooded area off of a main road.[15] It is a part of the Middle Georgia Correctional Complex, which has five prisons.[10]

In 1992 Eric Harrison of the Los Angeles Times said that it "resembles nothing so much as a low-lying suburban office park or a modern middle school."[15]



  1. ^ a b c "Waycross Native Takes Over Troubled Women's Prison." Waycross Journal-Herald. Monday April 6, 1992. Volume 74, No. 8. P-1. Retrieved on November 18, 2012.
  2. ^ Siegel and Bartollas, p. 211.
  3. ^ "Georgia women's prison inmates claim sex abuse." Toledo Blade. Tuesday September 1, 1992. Page 3. Retrieved from Google News on November 18, 2012.
  4. ^ a b "ACROSS THE USA: NEWS FROM EVERY STATE." USA Today. January 22, 1993. News 6A. Retrieved on November 18, 2012.
  5. ^ a b c Cook, Rhonda. "State closed DeKalb County prison." Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Friday April 1, 2011. Retrieved on November 18, 2012.
  6. ^ "Over Dozen Women Inmates Graduate." Waycross Journal-Herald. Monday August 23, 1982. P-2. Retrieved from Google News (2 of 18) on November 18, 2012. "HARDWICK, Ga. (AP) — Convicted murderer Janice Buttram waits on Georgia's Death Row[...]of the Middle Georgia Correctional Institution Women's Unit."
  7. ^ "Convicted Murderer Awaits Resentence." Calhoun Times and Gordon County News. Saturday May 25, 1991. 10A. Retrieved on November 18, 2012. "Mrs. Buttram, now 28, has been at Georgia's maximum security prison for women at Hardwick."
  8. ^ "1999 Annual Report." (Archive) Georgia Department of Corrections. p. 21. Retrieved on November 18, 2012.
  9. ^ a b "Metro Correctional Institution Temporarily State's Only Co-ed Prison." Waycross Journal-Herald. Monday August 30, 1993. P-4. Retrieved from Google News on November 18, 2012.
  10. ^ a b "WOMEN INMATES MOVED OUT OF BALDWIN." Macon Telegraph. April 30, 1995. 4B.
  11. ^ "47 Georgia Correctional Officers Arrested in Drug Conspiracy". WSAV. 11 Feb 2016. Retrieved 28 July 2016. 
  12. ^ "2010 Census - Census Block Map Milledgeville, GA." U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved on November 18, 2012.
  13. ^ "2010 Census - Census Block Map Milledgeville, GA Block 5." U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved on November 18, 2012.
  14. ^ "Baldwin State Prison." Georgia Department of Corrections. Retrieved on November 18, 2012. "ADDRESS: LAYING FARM ROAD / POST OFFICE BOX 218 HARDWICK, GA 31034"
  15. ^ a b c Harrison, Eric. "Nearly 200 Women Have Told of Being Raped, Abused in a Georgia Prison Scandal So Broad Even Officials Say It's . . . : A 13-Year Nightmare." Los Angeles Times. December 30, 1992. Retrieved on November 18, 2012. Also available at (Archive) The Baltimore Sun as "Women from Ga. prison relate stories of horror Officials finally acting to end years of abuse"

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Coordinates: 33°01′41″N 83°13′10″W / 33.02806°N 83.21944°W / 33.02806; -83.21944