Lock Down

About the show

Lockdown plunges viewers headfirst into life in the "big house," the gritty underworld of America's maximum-security prisons, where gangs are prevalent, predators stalk their next prey and inmates are armed with deadly weapons. But prison officials have their own weapons in the form of modern surveillance and old-time isolation -- plus steel batons and pepper spray -- to help keep the peace in these miniature war zones.


Upcoming episodes

Sep 25th

Iron Grip

Inside alexander correctional, there's a constant struggle for control. As north carolina's newest 'close' or maximum security prison, this fortress houses a thousand of the most problematic inmates in the state. And to keep them in line, the staff employs a variety of control methods, from the latest technological systems to good old-fashioned rules and regulations. In fact, alexander has already gained a reputation among inmates at other facilities: It is the prison to avoid - the one with an iron grip on its prisoners. But where there's a will, there's a way. Whether dealing drugs or contracting 'hits', the criminals at alexander don't play by the rules. They'll do whatever it takes to get out from under the staff's stifling control.
Sep 29th

Gang Vs. Family

In utah, a homegrown gang battles larger national gangs for turf. But this gang is different - their loyalty is so extreme that membership passes from generation to generation, and members put the gang first - no matter the cost. Their wars spill into the state’s only maximum-security prison: Utah state prison. Over one in four of the 4,000 plus inmate population have gang ties, and the most active gangsters spill blood, flaunt weapons and order hits from behind bars. Inside utah state prison, we watch what happens when an inmate’s gang and family are one and the same.
Oct 2nd


Wyoming stows all their worst inmates in the isolated, windblown prairie town of rawlins; the trouble is, it’s so isolated not enough people live there to staff the wyoming state penitentiary. Facing desperate understaffing and overcrowding, wyoming went to extreme measures, recruiting correctional officers from economically depressed areas elsewhere in the united states. Thirty new officer recruits came to rawlins with one thing in common: None of them had law enforcement experience to help them police the prison’s convicted murderers, rapists and child molesters. We follow three new recruits into the fire where they face the challenges of officer training, manipulative inmates, and working in a dangerous environment where ‘escape’ and ‘murder’ are realities.
Oct 6th

Arizona Tent City

In phoenix, arizona, inmates are held in outdoor pens separated from the desert elements – that swing between 130 degrees in the summer to well below freezing during the winter nights – by only their korean war-era group tents. The country prides itself on keeping jail costs low, conditions primitive and making inmate’s labor for their care and feeding in the nation’s only chain gang.
Oct 9th

Inmate University

Ironwood correctional facility, set in the middle of the california desert, is a series of extremes. Over-crowded, understaffed, and subject to brutally hot summers, tensions at this prison seem to rise with the thermometer. But there is a group of inmates among the 4,800 incarcerated at ironwood dedicated to self-improvement. Those taking part face stiff opposition from their gangs to attend classes. When race and gang riots erupts in the yard in the withering 112-degree heat, many of the prison’s 81 student inmates must make critical decisions that will affect their lives both inside and outside the prison walls.
Oct 13th

First Timers

Iowa separates its youthful offenders (18-26) from their hardened adult prison population, housing the young convicts at fort dodge, in the middle of the iowa prairie. But put 1,100 young medium-security convicts together, and you have a breeding ground for trouble – everything from foolishness to gang violence. With the look of a high school, fort dodge juggles a mix of inmates – racially divided gangs, lower functioning inmates, a handful of juveniles – all on the same yard. Tensions run high and fights are frequent; too much trouble and these inmates are locked-up at the state’s max prison with older and more dangerous convicts.
Oct 16th

County Jail

The portland jail isn’t just running out of room for its 700 inmates – it ran out a long time ago. And every day the portland police dragnet pulls in more thieves, drug dealers and addicts from the most populated county in the state of oregon. With approximately 3,500 new bookings per month – that’s over 100 bookings per day – the jail lacks the space, the staff and the resources to adequately accommodate all of its prisoners. Each day, those with minor infractions are released to make room for the serious offenders.
Oct 20th

Surviving Statesville

Built in 1925, and aging badly, statesville correctional is a dangerous place filled with dangerous men, nearly all serving 20 years minimum. Half are in for murder and another quarter are serving time for violent crimes. For many, the thing that makes life bearable are family, loved ones, girlfriends and friends in general but it’s a struggle. Simkatyah winfield is a drug dealer doing 60 years for murder but he’s also a devoted dad. Yet how can he really act as a good parent behind bars, especially now that his 17-year-old daughter is pregnant? Some inmates look beyond the gates of the prison to sustain them. Other inmates are trying just to be themselves behind bars, without getting punished for it. Guiding us through statesville is veteran of 16 years, sgt. Baldwin who expresses the importance of the outside world to inmates and how it keeps them sane. It turns out family, romance, and friendships are the things that make life go around, even among the worst of the worst.