Federal Correctional Institution, McDowell

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Federal Correctional Institution, McDowell
LocationWelch, McDowell County, West Virginia
Security classMedium-security (with minimum-security prison camp)
Population1,660 (130 in prison camp)
Managed byFederal Bureau of Prisons

The Federal Correctional Institution, McDowell (FCI McDowell) is a medium-security federal prison for male offenders in southeastern West Virginia. It also has an adjacent satellite prison camp which houses minimum-security male offenders. It is operated by the Federal Bureau of Prisons, a division of the United States Department of Justice.[1] It is located within the city limits of Welch, although it lies in a detached rural area about four miles north of the city center.


In the early 2000s, the Bureau of Prisons identified McDowell County, West Virginia as a potential location for a new federal correctional facility. A panel of BOP officials held a hearing in 2004 to give residents the opportunity to register their opinions regarding the project. Two-hundred residents attended the hearing and were nearly unanimous in their approval, citing the hundreds of jobs the construction project would provide. The project eventually employed approximately 100 contractors, who further boosted the local economy by patronizing local businesses. The facility was completed in 2010 at an approximate cost of $223 million.[2][3][4] The first inmates to arrive were assigned to the minimum-security prison camp and were immediately put to work in maintenance jobs.[5] However, in a July 2010 article, West Virginia Public Broadcasting reported that local people were not landing as many prison jobs as expected. Out of the first 87 hires, only 12 were from McDowell County and 5 from bordering Wyoming County.[6]

Notable inmates (current and former)[edit]

Inmate Name Register Number Status Details
Tony F. Mack 64765-050 Serving a 58-month sentence; scheduled for release in 2018.[7] Mayor of Trenton, New Jersey from 2010 to 2014; convicted in 2014 of bribery, mail fraud, wire fraud and extortion for agreeing to obtain city construction permits and sell city-owned property at below market value in exchange for money.[8][9]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "FCI McDowell". Bop.gov. Federal Bureau of Prisons. Retrieved 2015-10-25.
  2. ^ Hodel, Martha Bryson (April 28, 2004). "Residents at hearing favor federal prison". The Charleston Gazette. Archived from the original on April 9, 2016. Retrieved 16 March 2013.
  3. ^ Ownes, Charles (January 1, 2008). "Official: Federal prison ahead of schedule". Bluefield Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 16 March 2013.
  4. ^ Lilly, Jessica. "McDowell County excited about new federal prison". 2013 West Virginia Public Broadcasting. Retrieved 16 March 2013.
  5. ^ Owens, Charles (September 18, 2010). "First inmates arrive at McDowell's new federal prison". Bluefield Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 28 June 2013.
  6. ^ Lilly, Jessica (July 6, 2010). "Locals missing out on new jobs at McDowell County federal prison". West Virginia Public Broadcasting. Retrieved 28 June 2013.
  7. ^ Foster, David (June 25, 2014). "Ex-Trenton Mayor Tony Mack reports to West Virginia prison on Thursday". The Trentonian. Retrieved 1 July 2014.
  8. ^ "Mayor Tony Mack of Trenton Is Found Guilty of Taking Bribes". The New York Times. Retrieved 2015-10-25.
  9. ^ "Ex-Trenton Mayor Tony Mack's brother goes to jail on Thursday". Trentonian.com. 2014-06-18. Retrieved 2015-10-25.

External links[edit]

Federal Correctional Institution, McDowell - Official website

Coordinates: 37°28′12″N 81°33′11″W / 37.47000°N 81.55306°W / 37.47000; -81.55306