Inmate Search

Have you come to a place in your life where you need to look for an inmate? An inmate locator tool will help you find inmates that have been in prison or that have been released from prison.

There are different databases for different prisons. For example, the offender search you use for a federal prison might be different than a state prison prisoner lookup.

If you’d like to do an inmate locator, you will need to know a few things about the inmate. Sometimes all you need is the inmate number. Other times, you need the first name and last name of the inmate. Inmate searches are free, all you need to know is how to use the inmate search tools.

Why You Should Keep in Touch with a Prisoner

Many people have a desire to keep in touch with prisoners that have been incarcerated and there are good reasons for that. Using a jail roster or mug shots, you should be able to locate a prisoner and then keep in touch with him or her.

Staying connected with a prisoner is important to them and to you. Most prisons encourage inmates to keep in touch with their friends and family. This helps the prisoner when it’s time to be released from prison.

There are actually studies out there that show inmates that keep in touch with friends and family, while in prison, may be less likely to find themselves back in prison. Keeping in touch is important, which is why you need to know how to search for a prisoner.

Locating a Federal Prisoner with Inmate Search

If you know of someone that is in a federal prison, then you will be excited to know that the federal search tool can be used for any inmate. There is a federal search tool that can help you find an inmate. All you need to know is the first, middle, and last name of the inmate.

Of course, you can also search for the inmate by number. You can find the inmate’s number by using the federal search tool. You can basically find anything you need to know about a federal inmate, using these tools.

Other search criteria you can use is the inmate’s race, gender, or even their age. Their name is important when searching, but the other criteria can really help you break down where the inmate you’re searching for is located.

State Prisoner Lookup

Looking up a prisoner in a state prison? This search will prove to be a little different for a variety of reasons. When you’re using a search tool for a state prison, you will find that they only house information for the inmates they currently have.

You will need to click on each state to find a state prisoner. When you click on the link, it will take you to the inmate locator, from there you can search for an inmate by name, gender, or race. Utilize the search function to find the inmate you’re looking for.

Look below for the state prison you may be looking for:


State prisons may have limited information. Depending on the information available, you may or may not be able to find the info you’re looking for. Some use the  VINE or  Detainee Locator System ICE to help build their state inmate search system.

What to Do With All the Information

When you do a prison search for an inmate, you’re going to have a lot of information. This information may be a lot, but all of it will come in handy. You may get a picture of the inmate, their name, their birthdate, and their crime.

This information can help you get in touch with the inmate. Once you know they’re in a facility, you can begin communicating with them from talking on the phone, visiting with the inmate, or even sending them mail.

Communicating with an inmate gets a lot easier once you know where the inmate is located. Being able to communicate with an inmate will take a lot of stress away!

Difference Between Federal and State Prisons

You may be wondering what the difference is between state and federal prisons. However, there is a big difference.

When it comes to federal prisons, there are at least 50 of them, which means at least one for each state. If you can’t find an inmate, try searching the state prisons first. If you can’t find someone in a state prison, then you may consider looking for them in a federal prison.

State prisons have their own database per state. This means that you can only find an inmate if you know which facility they’re in. State prisons don’t have the capability of searching city, county, or police jails. If you’re looking for an inmate in one of these types of jails, you will need to go to that website and look.

To find an inmate in county jail, you will need to most likely call that jail to find an inmate. To find them, you will need to know the first and last name of the inmate.

Federal prisons have a large database, which means you can find an inmate at any of the prisons, using the one search tool.

Tips and Tools for Using an Inmate Locator

Now that you know all about locating an inmate, you may be wondering what are some really good tips and tools for making the search as easy as possible. Sometimes, knowing what can or can’t happen can help you plan better!

Here are a few tips and tools for locating an inmate:

Database isn’t in real time

Whether it’s a state inmate locator or a federal inmate locator, just remember that the database takes time to update. Don’t get discouraged if you search for an inmate, but they cannot be found in the database. Give it at least 24 hours between searches.

Illegal immigrants may not show their true name

If an inmate is not a citizen of this country, you may struggle to find their name online with the search tool. Keep looking though because their true name might be found out and in that case, it will be listed on the website, so you can search for it.

Technological errors will happen

When you’re searching for an inmate, just know that all the information isn’t going to be 100% accurate. There might be an error in a first or last name or even a charge. If this is the case, try not to get upset about it.

If you notice that information is done in error, you can always contact the prison or jail and get the information changes. Just know that you need to be patient with them to update the website with the correct information.

Get Support When You Need It

Something you should know is that it can be tough to find out that an inmate is in prison. When and if this is the case, you may need to find support. Counseling is always a great option, when it comes to getting support when a loved one is in prison.

Also, keep in mind that locating an inmate can bring up a lot of memories that you didn’t have before. Knowing someone is in prison or that they’re in a particular prison can be eye-opening. Make sure you’re prepared for what you’re going to find with a prison search.