I built a small Protected Custody wing for snitches, ex-law, and other at-risk prisoners. The wing is enclosed and includes both a yard and a canteen, and all the cells have all the amenities a prisoner might want.

Unfortunately, the protected custody inmates occasionally end up outside their wing. I think they're trying to eat at the regular canteen or exercise in the regular yard. This is almost always fatal.

The entire wing is designated protected custody. Most of the rest of the prison is Shared to accommodate a 50:50 mix of max and medium security. Designating it to medium and max (unless there's a way to make it both) would require redesigning the whole prison and I'd rather not have to do that.

Their regime does not include work- it is sleep, lockup, eat and yard. I used to include free time before other prisoners are awake.

How do I keep my protected prisoners in their own wing without setting them all to permanent lockdown? Ideally giving them free time (within their wing).


3 Answers 3


An alternative way to achieve this, which still allows you to keep the majority of your prison using the shared zoning option, is to build a staff-only zoned entrance gateway to your protective custody zone:

Protective custody area with staff only designated tunnel

Inmates are escorted through the staff only zone through both doors (circled in blue) when they are first moved to protective custody, but then are not permitted back to the main prison. In order for this to work effectively the protective custody wing should be able to satisfy all basic prisoner needs internally.


Change the shared area to High level or normal level. That way, protected custody won't wonder around that area.

If you keep it shared level, the protected custody will eventually go there. One thing you could do is to make the schedules that do not match. For instance, keep the canteen shared, but high security prisoners never eat at the same time the protected custody prisoners. It is somewhat annoying to setup that config, but it is possible.

Another thing you could do (and that's how I play it) is to create 3 different areas: 1 for protected, 1 for normal and 1 for High level. One kitchen+canteen+workplace+yard+common area for each security level.

Since I place shower inside the cells, I don't bother making common areas for that.

  • It's a possibility and something to bear in mind when I sell and rebuild. Nov 14, 2015 at 19:07
  • My building is normally a "Y" format with a big kitchen in the middle serving the three canteens and a corridor going from the kitchen to the exit so the cookers can grab the food from outside and take out the trash. I also make a lateral corridor that surround the prison to take each type of prisoner to their specific area of the "Y". That way, each prisoner is secluded to a specific area with absolutely no access to the other area (besides the kitchen, of course, but kitchen is staff only with a patrol inside).
    – vianna77
    Nov 14, 2015 at 19:15

You can separate protective custody prisoners from your normal population without any architectural changes by using the ability to set a different regime for different prisoner classifications. Make sure that whenever the general population has an activity where they are in a specific room (shower, yard, eat), the protective custody regime is on a different activity.

Be careful of "Free Time" and "Work". During these times, prisoners can hang around practically everywhere. So when one group has one of these, the other group should better be on "Lockup".

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