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How to Find Criminal Records and Mugshots in the United States

According to statistics collected in the past few years, one in three American adults have a criminal record. A criminal record contains booking records, mugshots, warrants, arrest records, criminal proceeding records, and more. Such records are collected and maintained by law enforcement agencies and government agencies in the country. As of today, criminal records are public records, so you can find mugshots and criminal records online and offline. How can you find criminal records? here are the answers.

Where are criminal records kept?

As mentioned above, there are several agencies that maintain public criminal records. Below are the various types of criminal records, and the agencies where they are kept:

Arrest records: including mugshots are kept by the arresting authority – sheriff, police department, state patrol). Arrest records can also be kept by the booking agency.

Criminal case records: arrest records, conviction records, sentencing records: these are all kept by the court in which the criminal proceedings took place. Another agency that might be keeping criminal case records is the prosecuting agency in the case.

Final criminal records: including sentencing, conviction, jail records/prison records, and probation records: such records are mainly kept in a criminal history database in each state. The agencies that fall under this definition are state police, state criminal investigations, state identifications bureau, and public safety/justice departments.

Complete criminal records: can be found in national justice databases. Such databases are operated by the FBI.

  • It is important to note that not all criminal records and mugshots are available to the public. In juvenile criminal cases, or in cases where the criminal records have been sealed or expunged, the data will not be available to the general public.

How to Find Criminal Records and Mugshots

If you need to get access to criminal records, there are several ways you can go about it, like the following:

Government websites

There are state government websites that provide a criminal record search service. To find criminal records in a particular state, you need to type in the name of the state + “government criminal records search” into a search engine of your choice. Choose an official government website, and follow the criminal record search directions.

Law enforcement websites

Another way to find criminal records and mugshots is by visiting the website of the agency that handled the arrest. Type in the name of the agency in question + inmate search, and follow the instructions on the website.

State courts

If you want to find court records that are a part of criminal records, you can perform a court record search. Type in the name of the court in which the proceedings took place and search for the records in question.

  • State department of public safety, investigation or criminal justice
  • A resource that can provide you with access to conviction records.
  • In-person criminal records search

Another way to find criminal records is by contacting the agencies that maintain such records in person. If you did not what you were looking for in an online resource, you can contact the authority in person. You can send a request via US post or email to the agency that holds the records that you are searching for. In some cases, you will be required to provide a fingerprint card or a signed request form for the criminal record search to take place. In these cases, you will have to go to the necessary agency and file a request in person.

Complete online criminal record search

Another way to tap into criminal records, mugshots, arrest records, and court records are by using a public record search service. There are several websites that provide access to public records, but you should only use a legal and regulated service, such as the one provided to you by GoLookUp. The online directory provides access to all the public records in the US, so you can find what you are looking for. The search is available in each state, so you will not need to perform an individual agency search to find the information that you need.

To perform a criminal record search with GoLookUp, you need to enter two details into the directory:

  • The full name of the person in question
  • The state in which the criminal proceedings took place

The search engine will then begin to scan public records in search of criminal records. At the end of the search, you will receive a complete report that includes the criminal history of the person in question. If you did not find what you are looking for, you can try different name spellings. You can also use other services that GoLookUp provides to find criminal records and mugshots; the website operates a reverse phone number search, reverse address search, and reverse email search. All the services are unlimited, so you can perform numerous searches without having to pay for each search.


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