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What Are Inmate Records?

Inmate records are details of persons incarcerated in a correctional facility. These records show the identity of the inmate in question, as well as other information about the inmate’s charges, sentence, and current incarceration status. The following are some information available on a North Carolina inmate’s record:

  • Name
  • Age
  • Gender
  • Race
  • Current location
  • Incarceration date
  • Expected date of release.

The North Carolina Department of Public Safety (NCDPS) operates more than 50 state prisons, along with several other detention facilities in the state. Through an online portal, the DPS makes information about the state’s inmates available to the general public. However, note that information on juvenile inmates is protected by law, and are not open to the general public. Access to juvenile records may only be granted to the juvenile named on the record, a parent/guardian or custodian, an attorney, and the county department of social services.

Inmate records for persons incarcerated in North Carolina county or city jails are generally issued and maintained by the local sheriff’s office or other law enforcement agencies such as police departments. Interested persons may gain access to these records from the respective custodian.

How To Find An Inmate In North Carolina?

A person seeking information on where an inmate is being held, or information regarding the inmate’s committal in any of the state prisons or correctional facilities may use the offender search provided by the NCDPS. Interested persons may find an inmate on the NCDPS’ platform using the following details:

  • Inmates status - whether the person is an active inmate, released, on probation, on parole
  • First and last name of the inmate, along with the middle initial
  • Offender number
  • Gender
  • Race
  • Ethnicity
  • Birthdate
  • Age range

Upon entering this information, the portal will display the result as follows:

  • Booking photo 
  • Inmate’s full name and aliases
  • Number of sentences
  • Type of committal
  • Conviction date
  • Sentence details
  • Type of sentence
  • Nature of the offense

How To Find An Inmate In North Carolina?

Many Counties in North Carolina have their own holding facilities with databases open to the general public. To use this search function, a requestor would need to know the specific county where the inmate is held.

Searches may be done via each county’s sheriff’s office website or online portals provided by the county. For example, in Wake County, a requester may gain access to the records of all persons in custody via the inmate inquiry page provided by the sheriff’s office. The page features a list of all persons in custody, including a primary charge and an arrest date. Interested persons may also filter the list by last name, first name, middle name, race, age, sex, and booking agency. 

How To Find A Federal Inmate In North Carolina?

Persons interested in locating an inmate incarcerated in a North Carolina federal facility may use the Federal Bureau of Prisons’ (BOP) online inmate locator. The inmate locator contains records of all inmates in all of the state’s federal facilities from 1982 to date. Persons may search the BOP’s database by name or by number.

To search by name, use the inmate’s first name, last name, or middle name. Other options available with the name search include the inmate’s race, age, and sex.

To search via registration number, the user would need one of the following numbers: 

  • Bureau of Prisons registration number
  • D.C. Department of Corrections number
  • Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) number
  • Immigration and Naturalization Services number

The Bureau of Prisons does not have the records of all inmates incarcerated before 1982. Persons seeking such information may contact the National Archives Records Administration (NARA) for such records, providing the following information:

  • Inmate name (including middle name/initial);
  • Date of birth or approximate age at the time of incarceration;
  • Race, and
  • Approximate dates in prison.

To locate a NARA record, send a written request by mail. The request should include information about the inmate’s name, type of sentence, details on the charge, or release date for inmates no longer in the BOP’s custody. Send the detailed request to:

The National Archives and Records Administration

8601 Adelphi Road

College Park, MD 20740–6001

Note that the NARA database may not have a record for every inmate held in prison from before 1982. 

How To Find Inmate Records In North Carolina?

For physical records of federal inmates, interested persons may make requests online via the freedom of information request form. Fill the form with accurate information, including the requestor’s name, email address, phone number, and other contact details. The requestor should also describe the records sought, providing as many details as possible. Note that the BOP may charge a fee, and allow interested persons to expedite a request. Expedited requests may cost an additional fee.

Alternatively, send a written request to the BOP. The request should contain all relevant information for both the requestor and also the inmate. Send the request by mail to:

FOIA/PA Section

Office of General Counsel, Room 924

Federal Bureau of Prisons

320 First Street, N. W.

Washington, DC 20534

Requestors may also send a request via email to OGC_EFOIA@BOP.GOV.

For state prison inmate records, a person may contact the NCDPS using the information below:

N. C. Department of Public Safety

4201 Mail Service Center

Raleigh, NC 27699–4201


Phone requests are also available for state prison inmate records by dialing (919) 716–3200.

For county inmate records, contact the local county sheriff’s office with a formal request. Persons may also visit the sheriff’s office to make a request in person.

Records that are considered public may be accessible from some third-party websites. These websites often make searching simpler, as they are not limited by geographic location, and search engines on these sites may help when starting a search for a specific or multiple records. To begin using such a search engine on a third-party or government website, interested parties usually must provide:

  • The name of the person involved in the record, unless said person is a juvenile
  • The location or assumed location of the record or person involved. This includes information such as the city, county, or state that the person resides in or was accused in

Third-party sites are independent of government sources and are not sponsored by these government agencies. Because of this, record availability on third-party sites may vary.

How To Put Money On Jail Inmates Book In North Carolina?

North Carolina inmates may receive funds in commissary accounts. Friends and family may deposit funds into these accounts via electronic transfers, in person, by phone, and by mail. The NCDPS partners with third-party services to receive deposits on behalf of inmates.

To deposit funds via telephone, call JPay on 1–800–574–5729. Note that phone deposits require a debit or credit card. Also, additional transaction charges may apply.

Inmates may also receive funds by mail. Send a money order payable to JPay, including the inmate’s full name, and I. D. Sent the documents to:


P. O. Box 173070

Hialeah, FL 33017

Note that deposits using the JPay platform are restricted. North Carolina only permits JPay payments for persons identified as approved visitors for the inmate. 

To deposit funds for county inmates, contact the respective county correctional facilities. Note that several counties may have different or preferred methods for receiving these deposits. For example, in Wake County, persons may visit the Wake County Detention Center to make payments into an inmate’s books physically or request information on how to make such payments. Visit the detention center on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, between 9:00 a.m.—4:00 p.m. and on Tuesdays and Thursdays, between 10:00 a.m.—7:00 p.m.

Persons may also contact the County Sheriff’s Office.

  • Criminal Records
  • Arrests Records
  • Warrants
  • Driving Violations
  • Inmate Records
  • Felonies
  • Misdemeanors
  • Bankruptcies
  • Tax & Property Liens
  • Civil Judgements
  • Federal Dockets
  • Probate Records
  • Marriage Records
  • Divorce Records
  • Death Records
  • Property Records
  • Asset Records
  • Business Ownership
  • Professional Licenses
  • And More!