Contraband Detection


The presence of contraband creates a dangerous situation for jails, prisons, community residential, and juvenile facilities. Contraband in a correctional facility can contribute to escape, assault, medical emergencies, gambling, intimidation, and other problems. When inmates have contraband, the staff’s ability to control the facility is undermined. This course teaches you how to recognize and control contraband in your facility so that you can increase safety and security for everyone. After defining contraband and discussing the challenge of contraband in correctional facilities, you will learn about detecting and preventing contraband through searches of inmates, cells, common areas, vehicles, and the facility perimeter. This course is intended for correctional staff from jails, prisons, and community residential and juvenile facilities; supervisory and management staff can also gain insight into overcoming the challenge of contraband. The course includes a blend of instructional strategies and includes interactivity so that you can apply your learning.


Hours: 1.75 - 2.00


Certificates provided by accrediting body (2 Match)

American Jail Association Certification


This activity is approved for 2.00 contact hours.

South Carolina Criminal Justice Academy

1.75 HOURS

This course has been approved by the South Carolina Criminal Justice Academy for 1.75 hours. CJA Lesson Plan #5707

Course Details

Course Code: EL-CD-CORR-AJA
Hours: 1.75
Type: Online Course
Content Expiration Date: 12/31/2018
Learning Objectives:
Define contraband in correctional facilities.
Explain how to properly search inmates, visitors, and other individuals to detect contraband.
Describe the areas of the facility that should be searched to detect contraband.

Section 1: Introduction A. Course Contributor B. About This Course C. Learning Objectives Section 2: Contraband Basics A. Breaking News B. What is Contraband? C. Unauthorized Items D. Items in Excess of Authorized Amounts E. Items Converted for Unauthorized Use F. Identifying Contraband G. The Challenge of Contraband H. Contraband Cycle I. Breaking the Contraband Cycle J. Section Summary Section 3: Detecting Contraband: Searching Individuals A. Searching Inmates B. Searching Inmates Entering the Facility C. Searching Inmates in the Facility D. Inmate Searches E. Frisk/Pat Searches F. Strip Searches G. Body Cavity Searches H. Types of Searches I. Searching Inmate Visitors J. Searching Other Individuals K. Stopping Contraband at the Door L. Section Summary Section 4: Detecting Contraband: Facility Searches A. Searching the Facility B. Searching Cells C. Respecting Inmates’ Rights D. Think Like an Inmate E. Search the Cell as a Whole F. Search Furnishings G. Search Inmate Property H. Conducting a Cell Search I. Searching Common Areas J. Searching Transport Vehicles K. Searching Commercial Vehicles L. Perimeter Searches M. Special Assignment: Housing Unit Search N. Section Summary Section 5: Conclusion A. Summary B. References

Instructor: Kristin Keller, M.A.
Kristin Keller, M.A. has over 30 years of experience in a combination of corrections and training development. Kris spent 20 years working in the Larimer County Detention Center in Fort Collins, Colorado. She ended her career there as the Inmate Services Manager, with responsibility for all inmate services and civilian functions at the detention center, including library, program, and volunteer services; contracted food and medical services; inmate classification; mental health services; and office support. Kris then worked as a Correctional Program Specialist for the National Institute of Corrections for seven years, planning, developing, monitoring, and evaluating training programs, technical assistance, and information services for local correctional agencies across the nation. For the last five years, Kris has worked as a Training Specialist designing, developing, and delivering training to adults on computer software applications. Kris has a MA in Librarianship and Information Management from the University of Denver and a BS in Industrial and Labor Relations from Cornell University. Disclosure: Kristin Keller, M.A. has declared that no conflict of interest, Relevant Financial Relationship or Relevant Non-Financial Relationship exists.
Relias Learning will be transparent in disclosing if any commercial support, sponsorship or co-providership is present prior to the learner completing the course.
Relias Learning has a grievance policy in place to facilitate reports of dissatisfaction. Relias Learning will make every effort to resolve each grievance in a mutually satisfactory manner. In order to report a complaint or grievance please contact Relias Learning at
Course Delivery Method and Format
Asynchronous Distance Learning with interactivity which includes quizzes with questions/answers, and posttests.
If you require special accommodations to complete this module, please contact Relias Learning Customer Support by calling (800) 381-2321 or emailing