jail and prison records
A reporter can make a request with prison or jail authorities to interview an inmate. The inmate then must grant his/her permission.
For inmates in state prison in California, the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation also can withhold permission for an interview, even if the inmate has agreed.
In each case you should contact the press or public information officer for the agency and ask about their particular procedures for access to prisoners.
Here are links to web pages with information on visiting inmates in various prisons or jails: