Welcome to Zoukis Consulting Group's Inmate Locator search tool. This tool can aid you in quickly locating a state or federal inmate.
Inmate Search and Locator Tools: Staying Connected with Those In Prison
Prisoners are often cut off from contacting the world outside of prison. Likewise, family and friends can become cut off from their incarcerated loved ones. Restrictive correspondence, visiting, and telephone policies and a general lack of information about where the prisoner is currently incarcerated all make it very difficult to stay in contact with an inmate.
In an effort to make locating a state or federal prisoner easier, many departments of corrections have created online tools called inmate locator or prisoner locator tools - an online, electronic database that the public can access in order to search for an incarcerated loved one. However, it's sometimes difficult to find these databases.
Studies have shown that prisoners who stay in contact with their families and communities while incarcerated have lower recidivism rates – mostly due to the enhanced support network they can rely on while in prison and upon release. We hope this page will help family members and friends stay in contact.
Federal or State Prison?
Families and friends of prisoners should keep in mind that inmates in the United States can be housed in the custody of the Federal Bureau of Prisons, any of the 50 other state prison systems, or even a private prison that contracts with either the federal prison system or one of the state prison systems.
If you are attempting to locate a prisoner and don't know what prison system they are incarcerated in, then you should:
- Search the state's department of corrections' inmate locator for the state where the prisoner lived prior to their incarceration.
- Then try the Federal Bureau of Prisons inmate locator as both state and federal crimes can be committed and prosecuted in every state and jurisdiction of the United States.
How to Locate a Federal Prisoner
Locating a federal prisoner is fairly straightforward. Simply go to the Federal Bureau of Prisons' Inmate Locator tool. You have the ability to search by the inmate's BOP Register Number or by first and last name. If searching by name, you can further limit search results by inputting their race, age, and gender. This can help in cases where the name is common or the basic search results net many inmates.
The Federal Bureau of Prisons notes a few disclaimers concerning their inmate locator tool.
- The Federal Bureau of Prisons generally only houses federal pre-trial inmates, those sentenced by federal courts to a term of incarceration, and offenders from the District of Columbia who are convicted of felonies.
- When a federal inmate is released from custody, their inmate locator record remains online, but their release date shows "Released on ___."
- The Federal Bureau of Prisons' Inmate Locator Tool only contains information about inmates incarcerated post-1982. If you are searching for information concerning an inmate released prior to 1982, you will need to contact the National Archives for additional information.
- The Release Date data point reflects the inmate's good conduct time release date. This means that the date listed includes any projected credit for good conduct time earned. If an inmate loses good conduct time due to a disciplinary infraction, this date will change to reflect the loss of good conduct time.
- If an inmate is incarcerated for a crime committed before November 1, 1987, they are deemed an "Old Law" inmate and may be eligible for parole. In this case, the Release Date data point shows their statutory release date (i.e., the date of their full term of imprisonment minus any good conduct time). If the U.S. Parole Commission grants the inmate parole, the granted parole date will occur before the statutory release date.
- If the location indicates that the inmate is housed in a Regional Office, then the inmate is currently housed in state prison custody. This indicates that they are serving a concurrent state sentence (i.e., a state term of imprisonment and a federal term of imprisonment at the same time).
- If the location indicates that the inmate is housed in a Community Corrections Management Center (CCM), this means that they are currently housed in a contract halfway house. This occurs during the last 12 months of their term of imprisonment.
- If the location indicates "IN TRANSIT," then the inmate is currently being moved from one location to another. This could indicate a prison-to-prison transfer, transfer to a halfway house, or transfer to other judicial entities (e.g., court, state prison system, etc.).
If you, after following the above advice, are still having problems locating a federal inmate, please feel free to Contact Us. Our consultants can assist you in locating your loved one.
How to Locate a State Inmate
Locating a state prison inmate is much the same as locating a federal prisoner. Simply locate the state below where the inmate is currently incarcerated, click on the inmate locator link for that state, provide the personal information requested (e.g., name, inmate number, age, gender, race, etc.), and engage the search function.
- Alabama Inmate Locator
- Alaska Inmate Locator
- Arizona Inmate Locator
- Arkansas Inmate Locator
- California Inmate Locator
- Colorado Inmate Locator
- Connecticut Inmate Locator
- Delaware Inmate Locator
- Florida Inmate Locator
- Georgia Inmate Locator
- Hawaii Inmate Locator
- Idaho Inmate Locator
- Illinois Inmate Locator
- Indiana Inmate Locator
- Iowa Inmate Locator
- Kansas Inmate Locator
- Kentucky Inmate Locator
- Louisiana Inmate Locator
- Maine Inmate Locator
- Maryland Inmate Locator
- Massachusetts Inmate Locator
- Michigan Inmate Locator
- Minnesota Inmate Locator
- Mississippi Inmate Locator
- Missouri Inmate Locator
- Montana Inmate Locator
- Nebraska Inmate Locator
- Nevada Inmate Locator
- New Hampshire Inmate Locator
- New Jersey Inmate Locator
- New Mexico Inmate Locator
- New York Inmate Locator
- North Carolina Inmate Locator
- North Dakota Inmate Locator
- Ohio Inmate Locator
- Oklahoma Inmate Locator
- Oregon Inmate Locator
- Pennsylvania Inmate Locator
- Rhode Island Inmate Locator
- South Carolina Inmate Locator
- South Dakota Inmate Locator
- Tennessee Inmate Locator
- Texas Inmate Locator
- Utah Inmate Locator
- Vermont Inmate Locator
- Virginia Inmate Locator
- Washington Inmate Locator
- Washington DC Criminal Search
- West Virginia Inmate Locator
- Wisconsin Inmate Locator
- Wyoming Inmate Locator
Note: State prison inmate locators -- much like the Federal Bureau of Prisons' inmate locator -- do not have access to or communicate with county prisons, regional jails, or city jails. Most offender searches will be unable to locate information on county inmates or jail detainees. While some county jails do have online inmate search access, most do not. If the information sought via the state prisoner search function here does not yield the desired result, the user can try searching for the name of the nearby counties and the term "inmate locator" in a search engine. This should bring up a list of county or regional jail inmate locators, where available.
Tips and Tools for Locating a Prisoner
You should be aware that inmate locator service databases are not updated in real-time. Some update once every 24 hours or even every few days. In this case, you may be required to wait a day or two to see if the inmate's location information is added to the database. If, after waiting a day or two, the information is still not available, you can try calling the facility where the inmate is located, or the central office (i.e., headquarters) for the prison system, to inquire. Typically, these administrative offices can be contacted via both telephone and email.
Note that it's not unheard of for individuals to be arrested, charged, and even convicted and sentenced to a term of incarceration without their name being known. For example, sometimes illegal immigrants will not disclose their true identity. More often, human error can be a factor when data is passed along through the courts. This can result in inaccurate information in these online inmate locator databases. This can make it even more difficult to obtain a prisoner's location information.
Prisons are as likely to suffer from the same error and technological difficulties as other organizations, and that can make it difficult to employ an accurate inmate locator search. Luckily, most of the state department of corrections' inmate locator tools work and provide users with the information they are seeking.
Historical Data on Prison Inmates
The various state departments of corrections have varying policies about accessing historical inmate identification and location data. Most states do not currently offer information on their individual prisons or the whereabouts of released inmates. If you believe the inmate you are searching for may have been released from custody, you can contact the state's public record's office or department of corrections for support.
Locating a family member or friend in prison can be a challenging and frustrating process. Going into this with your eyes wide open is essential. If you attempt to locate a prison inmate using the advice contained on this webpage but are still unsuccessful, please Contact Us and we will try to assist in any way we can.