All prisoners brought into the jail undergo a routine booking process, which includes:
- Removal of all contraband and weapons from the prisoner.
- A computer records check to determine if the prisoner has any outstanding warrants, used any other names, and prior criminal history.
- The booking officer obtains information that is entered into the Los Angeles County Wide Booking System
- The arresting officer determines the charges. The County of Los Angeles has set a uniform bail schedule for all offenses. A copy of the charges and bail amount are given to the prisoner.
- A medical screening is done to ensure that all prisoners receive any medical treatment they need.
- Prisoners are fingerprinted using the Tenprinter ™ machine.
- Prisoners are photographed and a copy is retained for future reference.
- Prisoners are allowed to make phone calls after the booking process has been completed (there is also a phone in each cell so prisoners can make collect phone calls at any time).
- The Tenprinter fingerprint machine electronically captures the prisoner's fingerprints and sends them via a T1 line to the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department and the California Department of Justice. The fingerprints are checked to verify the prisoner's name, date of birth, and any prior criminal history. This allows the City of Signal Hill to positively identify prisoners, usually within four hours.