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United States Penitentiary, Allenwood

The United States Penitentiary, Allenwood (USP Allenwood) is a maximum-security United States federal prison in Pennsylvania. It is part of the Allenwood Federal Correctional Complex (FCC Allenwood) and is operated by the Federal Bureau of Prisons, a division of the United States Department of Justice.

United States Penitentiary, Allenwood
USP Allenwood.jpg
LocationGregg Township, Union County, near Allenwood, Pennsylvania
Security classMaximum-security
Managed byFederal Bureau of Prisons
WardenRonnie R. Holt

FCC Allenwood is located on US Route 15 in White Deer, PA, approximately halfway between the cities of Williamsport and Lewisburg and approximately 75 miles (121 km) north of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, the state capital.[1]


Facility and programsEdit

USP Allenwood has four two-level housing units each of which consists of four 16-cell ranges around a central dayroom where inmates can congregate during the times they are allowed outside their cells. Most cells house two inmates each. Recreational and counseling facilities are located adjacent to the housing units. The outer perimeter is secured by a double line of fencing with rolled barbed wire on the ground in between the fences. The inner fence is equipped with a perimeter intrusion detection system and a road for patrol vehicles runs along the outer fence. Correction officers man six guard towers at each corner of the security fence and a seventh within the fence.[2][3]

Educational programs include GED, ESL, adult continuing education, vocational training, correspondence classes, and evening college classes. Inmates work in a UNICOR upholstery factory and institutional maintenance jobs such as food service and building repair. Medical, psychological and drug treatment services are also available.[4]

Notable incidentsEdit

1996 murderEdit

In April 1996, USP Allenwood inmate David Paul Hammer strangled fellow inmate Andrew Hunt Marti to death with a piece of homemade cord. Hammer and Marti were cellmates in the Special Housing Unit, where especially violent inmates are held. Writing on a website dedicated to his case in 2001, Hammer could not ‘attribute any motive’ to his actions. Hammer, a career criminal who was serving a 1,200-year sentence for crimes including larceny, shooting with intent to kill, kidnapping and making bomb threats, subsequently pleaded guilty to Marti's murder and was sentenced to death.[5]

The death sentenced was vacated in 2006 after a federal judge found that prosecutors withheld evidence during the penalty phase that would have bolstered Hammer's claim that he and Marti were having consensual sex. In July 2014, another federal judge concurred, ruling that life was appropriate sentence based upon multiple circumstances, including Hammer's acceptance of responsibility and remorsefulness, his extended family history of dysfunction, abuse and mental illness, his mental and emotional impairments and his self-improvement, specifically citing Hammer's writing to at-risk children counseling them against engaging in criminal conduct.[6]

2005 murderEdit

On September 28, 2005, USP Allenwood inmates Ritz Williams (47085-008) and Shawn Cooya (48896-008) stabbed a fellow inmate, 50-year-old Alvin Allery, ten times with a homemade knife and repeatedly kicked him in the head and torso, causing Allery's death. Williams and Cooya were already serving lengthy sentences, Williams for murder and Cooya for weapons violations. A subsequent investigation revealed that Williams and Cooya planned the attack in advance. In 2013, Williams and Cooya pleaded guilty to first-degree murder and were sentenced to life in prison.[7][8] both are now at ADX Florence

Notable inmates (current and former)Edit

Organized crimeEdit

All are serving life sentence.

Inmate Name Register Number Details
Howard Mason 24651-053 Convicted in 1989 of racketeering charges in connection with his leadership of "The Bebos," a violent drug gang in Queens, New York; ordered the 1988 murder of New York City Police Officer Edward Byrne.[9]
Louis Daidone 39065-053[10] Former Acting Boss of the Lucchese Crime Family in New York City; convicted in 2004 of murder, murder conspiracy, racketeering, and loansharking.[11]

Other crimesEdit

Inmate Name Register Number Status Details
Mohamud Salad Ali 77992-083 Serving a life sentence.[12] Somali pirate leader; pleaded guilty in 2011 to piracy in connection with the 2010 hijacking of the civilian yacht Quest, during which four US citizens were killed; Nine other pirates are serving life sentences at other federal facilities.[13][14]
Montana Barronette 62786-037 Serving a life sentence. Leader of violent West Baltimore gang, Trained to Go (TTG), convicted in 2019, sentenced to life in prison for federal racketeering and drug conspiracy charges, including eight (8) murders and witness intimidation.
Jorge A. Martinez 39798-060 Serving a life sentence.[15] Physician; convicted in 2006 of submitting $60 million in claims for unnecessary procedures in the first prosecution in US history involving a charge of health care fraud resulting in death; the story was featured on the CNBC television program American Greed.[16][17]
Esteban Santiago-Ruiz 15500-104 Serving a life sentence Convicted in 2018 for the Fort Lauderdale airport shooting
John Knock 11150-017 Now at FCI Fairton Convicted of drug trafficking conspiracy in 2000 for attempting to orchestrate the importation of thousands of tons of marijuana into the US from Pakistan and Lebanon; received the longest sentence for a nonviolent marijuana crime in US history.
James Eagan Holmes 02350-122 Serving 12 life terms plus 3,183 years.[18] Convicted for killing 12 people and injuring 70 during the 2012 Aurora, Colorado shooting.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "USP Allenwood". Federal Bureau of Prisons.
  2. ^ Bosworth, Mary (2002). The US Federal Prison System. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE. p. 375. ISBN 9780761923046.
  3. ^ Spens, Iona (1994). The Architecture of Incarceration. London: Academy Editions. p. 128. ISBN 9781854903587.
  4. ^ Bosworth, Mary (2002). The US Federal Prison System. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE. p. 375. ISBN 9780761923046.
  6. ^ Beauge, John (July 17, 2014). "Admitted murderer of Allenwood cell mate no longer facing execution". Penn Live. PA Media Group. Retrieved 18 October 2015.
  7. ^ Walker, R.A. (February 15, 2008). "Two indicted for 2005 killing at Allenwood prison complex". Williamsport Sun-Gazette (PA). Retrieved 12 October 2013.
  8. ^ "Pennsylvania Inmate Sentenced To Life In Prison For Violent Murder Of Fellow Inmate". US Department of Justice. May 15, 2013. Retrieved 12 October 2013.
  9. ^ Fried, Joseph P. (1994-01-09). "Drug Dealer Is Sentenced to Life For Ordering Killing of Officer". The New York Times.
  10. ^ "The Quick 10: 10 Intriguing Mobster Nicknames". mental_floss. 2015 Mental Floss, Inc. Retrieved 24 August 2015.
  11. ^ Preston, Julia (July 1, 2004). "Metro Briefing | New York: Manhattan: Mob Chief Sentenced". The New York Times.
  12. ^ Dries, Bill (September 12, 2013). "Petties Moved to Pennsylvania Prison". The Daily News Publishing Co. Inc. Retrieved 14 October 2015.
  13. ^ Nasaw, Daniel (October 3, 2011). "Somali pirates face hard time in US prison". BBC News. Retrieved 12 October 2013.
  14. ^ "Two More Somalis Plead Guilty To Charges Relating To Piracy Of Quest". US Department of Justice. 25 May 2011. Archived from the original on 15 January 2012. Retrieved 12 October 2013.
  15. ^ "JORGE A. MARTINEZ, Petitioner, v. WARDEN L. U. ODDO, Respondent". Leagle. 2015 Leagle, Inc. Retrieved 24 August 2015.
  16. ^ "Financial Crimes Report to the Public - Fiscal Year 2006". Federal Bureau of Investigation. 2006. Retrieved 12 October 2013.
  17. ^ "American Greed: Medical Scams: Dr. Martinez". CNBC. Retrieved 12 October 2013.
  18. ^ O'Neil, Ann. "James Holmes sentenced to life plus 3,318 years". CNN. Retrieved 28 Sep 2017.

External linksEdit