Over two million people are currently incarcerated in the United States. Getting up-to-date information on loved ones can be a challenge for families.
Fortunately, there are more tools than ever to identify and communicate with incarcerated individuals.
Find an inmate quickly with this easy guide for friends and families.
Locate the Correct City
First, you’ll need to locate the city of your loved one’s arrest. They may have been arrested in another county or state too.
If the person called you from jail, you can easily locate the facility and take steps to post bond. If you’re not in direct communication, ask other friends and relatives about the person’s whereabouts.
What if you have no real-life leads?
Your next step is to Google the person’s name. Local publications publish arrests quickly. Search engines may have already indexed your loved one’s arrest.
However, not every area publishes such information. If you can’t find any leads in search engines, investigate various jail databases individually.
How to Navigate an Inmate Database
There are countless inmate databases, including state and federal prison websites.
Some arrest records and mugshots are easy to access without inmate information. For example, many local police stations post mugshots on their Facebook pages and websites. It can also appear in BeenVerified. For been verified removal, you will need professional help.
However, most facilities require the following data:
- The first and last name of the individual
- Race and ethnicity
Type in as much data as you can into the database’s advanced filtering tool.
You may need an inmate number from the following correctional facilities:
- Federal Bureau of Investigation lookup
- Bureau of Prisons Register database
- Immigration and Naturalization agency
- D.C. Department of Corrections
Local jail databases typically require less information.
For example, if you want to find an inmate in Scott County, Missouri, search here to browse a complete list of names and records. You have to complete the captcha activity and input the person’s first and last name. You can also scroll through the list to find your loved one.
Alternatively, you could call an inmate lookup number to find someone in jail over the phone.
What to Do After You Find an Inmate
Speaking to an inmate may be more complicated. Communication and visitation rules vary among facilities.
After locating your loved one, browse the jail’s website for visitor information. Some jails allow in-person visits, while others limit visitation to video-only. Phone and visitation hours also vary.
Depending on the facility, you may be placed on a waiting list. Inmates must approve the list before allowing visitors. Thus, family members are encouraged to plan their visits well in advance.
There are several security protocols, as well. For example, simple household items and accessories are forbidden inside visiting areas due to contraband rules.
You’re also limited to certain outfits. Revealing clothing is prohibited, including sleeveless shirts, mini shorts, and skirts more than two inches above visitors’ knees.
Reunite With Your Loved Ones
Are you worried about your incarcerated loved one?
Follow this guide to find an inmate, including steps for visiting inmates.