Finding information on an inmate in a county, state, or federal facility is easy to do online, in most cases. USACountyRecords provides any easy to use search form on this page to instantly track inmates and find inmate records nationwide. Many county jails post inmate information through the sheriff’s office website. Each state has a website for its department of corrections. In a few states, the department is known by a slightly different name; however, a search for the state name, followed by “department of corrections” will guide you to the correct website. For information on federal inmates, visit the Federal Bureau of Prisons.
The type of information available varies from state to state, based on public information laws. However, it is usually possible to find the specific location where the inmate is held, details about visitation rules and availability, and other information about the facility. Other data that may be available online includes the inmate’s date of incarceration, pending charges, type of offense, length of sentence, and a photograph
Even if the only information you know is an inmate’s name and the state in which they are incarcerated, even if you think they may be in a county facility, you are likely to be able to locate them through VINElink. VINE stands for Victim Information and Notification Everyday, and provides information about an inmate’s location, changes in custody, and other details, subject to state laws on public records. In many states, any interested citizen may sign up for updates on an inmate. Some states limit availability of the VINE services to victims, next of kin, and witnesses. VINE can send updates via phone, email, TTY, or text messages, where available. Many states also offer updates on court cases, including scheduled hearings and trials, disposition of cases, and court docket entries. Through VINE, you may be notified if an inmate is moved, is nearing release, dies, or escapes.