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America's Hardest Prisons

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"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.

Latest episodes

VOD available
Prison inmates who have committed horrible crimes have an opportunity to change their ways.
VOD available
In prisons, human connections can sometimes mean the difference between life and death.
aired 32 days ago
Contraband runs rampant in prisons throughout the United States.
aired 32 days ago
In prisons across the country, officers and inmates are constantly at war.
aired 38 days ago
In prisons across the country, inmates must quickly learn new rules or face the consequences.
aired 39 days ago
In the prison system, criminality will sometimes run in the family.
aired 39 days ago
From slashed throats to gang warfare, violence is a constant threat in prisons across the United States.
aired 39 days ago
Behind the bars of California's prison system which houses some of the nation's most dangerous inmates.
aired 45 days ago
Convicted sex offenders at Fremont Correctional in Colorado discuss their crimes, their experiences behind bars and the facility's intensive therapy program.
aired 45 days ago
Ohio's Lebanon Correctional Institution is overfull and behind the times.
aired 45 days ago
Behind-the-scenes look at the Sacramento County Jail in California.
aired 45 days ago
Criminals in Cleveland, Ohio must pass through the Cuyahoga County Jail, home of the county's infamous Special Response Team.
aired 45 days ago
Outnumbered guards use military-like discipline and force to stay in control in the Tent City jail in the Arizona desert.
aired 46 days ago
Seventeen-year-old Cyleina is sentenced to 10 years in prison for armed robbery; Nathaniel spends 18 months completing a treatment program, and it may be time to rejoin his community.
aired 46 days ago
Life in one of Mexico's most notorious prisons, Centro do Ejecucion do Sanciones.
aired 51 days ago
Maryland struggles to contain all of its female felons in one prison, the Maryland Correctional Institution for Women.
aired 52 days ago
Three recruits struggle with their inexperience in the prison environment at Wyoming State Penitentiary.
aired 52 days ago
The Mexican Mafia battles a local prison gang at Bexar County Jail in San Antonio, Texas.
aired 52 days ago
Inmates in the largest county jail in Denver take advantage of the run down facility to make weapons before being moved.
aired 52 days ago
California's Pelican Bay State Prison leads the war on prison gangs.
aired 52 days ago
Inmates go to great lengths to try to break out of Colorado's Sterling Correctional Facility.

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This documentary series takes viewers inside prisons and jails across America and around the world, offering rarely obtained and comprehensive access into these locations. The show profiles the inmates and employees who work at these facilities, highlighting their day-to-day experiences and interactions within the confines of prison. By bringing audiences the real, raw stories of life behind bars, this program aims to provide a truly authentic and in-depth look inside the complex criminal justice system.
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