Alabama Department of Corrections Inmate Search Instructions

Search Alabama State Prison Inmates

Alabama Prisons Inmate Search

How do you look up an Alabama Department of Corrections Inmate?

The Alabama Department of Corrections maintains a searchable public database of all of the inmates they have in custody. They do not however, publicize a list of former prisoners. Once an inmate is out of prison, there is no record online of their former status as inmates.

The Alabama Department of Corrections maintains different types of prisons. The prison that an inmate is assigned to depends on factors such as security classification, remaining time of their sentence, gang affiliation, and location of their residence.

These are the different prison designations in Alabama, and the code/acronym that you will see in the search results for each inmate:

  • Correctional Center (CF),
  • Correctional Facility (Corr. Fact.),
  • Work Release (WR),
  • Work Center (CWC),
  • Community Center, and
  • Some facilities are just spelled out completely

Locations containing the acronym SRP refer to the Alabama Department of Corrections 'Supervised Reentry Program' and will also list the county in which the inmate resides on the program.

Inmates currently assigned to other states will appear with the name of that state in the 'Incarcerated' field.

Every inmate listing has a projected release date which is subject to change if the inmate loses 'good time', which every inmate automatically gets, due to disciplinary action or escape.

Lastly, there are special sentence codes to explain certain inmates that do not have a projected release date.

The codes are as follows:
DR: Death Row
LW: Life Without Parole
LB: Life & Barred from Parole
LP: Life with Parole Possible
BP: Barred from Parole

Every inmate is assigned a number called an AIS, also known as their Alabama Institutional Serial. This number follows them for life.

If an inmate is released and then re-arrested, convicted, sentenced again, and then put back in prison in Alabama, they will be identified using the same AIS. That is why when you look up an Alabama Department of Corrections inmate, you will see his or her previous Alabama prison experiences.

Alabama Department of Corrections Inmate Search Instructions

How to Search for State Prison Inmates in Alabama

Since incarcerating its first inmate in 1842, in a prison with 20 guards and 208 cells, the Alabama Department of Corrections has grown into an organization today of over 3,400 employees with an inmate population approaching 26,000+ prisoners.

The following will explain the tricks and hacks you can use to find any inmate in custody with the Alabama Department of Corrections, even if you don't know how to spell their name.

Step 1

There are many ways to search for an inmate doing state time in Alabama:

  • Search for an inmate using their AIS.
  • Search for an inmate using their full name, FIRST and LAST.
  • Search for an inmate using just their LAST name.
  • Search for an inmate using just their FIRST name.
  • Search for an inmate using a single letter of their LAST name; for example 'A'.
  • Search for an inmate using a single letter of their FIRST name; for example 'A'.

  • List all 26,000 inmates currently in the Alabama Department of Corrections prisons. 

To produce the entire list, enter % in the field for the last name and click the 'search' button.

Step 2

Once you click the search button you will see the results of your search. If you searched using the inmate's AIS, or if it's an uncommon name, the results will display your inmate.

If you chose to search for an inmate with a common name, or you chose to use just a single letter, or the %, you will be presented with a list that looks like this:
(Note, we have covered names and AIS numbers)

Step 3

Click on the name of  the inmate you wish to see displayed. The listing will give you their AIS, the insitution they are located, custody status, aliases, personal characteristics, personal information, admit date, time served, projected release date, parole consideration date and information about previous time served within the Alabama Department of Corrections on prior convictions.

County Jails in Alabama

County Jails in Alabama are primarily run by the local sheriff, and in the case of a few cities, there are also city jails run by their local police department.

After an arrest, an offender is sometimes held in the jail of the county where they were apprehended until they either pay a bond or bail, which entitles them to be released upon a promise to return to court for their trial, or they are held until their trial.

If an offender is found guilty and is given a sentence of less than one year, he or she will do their time in the county jail.  

If they are found guilty and given a sentence of more than one year, they will be remanded to the Alabama Department of Corrections to do their time. The only exception is if their crime is a federal offense. In that case they will be tried in a federal court and if found guilty, will be remanded to a federal prison.

Federal - Bureau of Prisons - Inmate Locator

How to Search for a Federal Inmate in the Bureau of Prisons

The Bureau of Prisons Inmate Locator includes inmates that are not only in custody, but who have been in custody and have been released (or who died in custody) since 1982. 

For inmates in custody prior to 1982, visit the National Archives Records Administration and provide the following information:

  • Inmate name (including middle name/initial),
  • Inmate's date of birth or approximate age at time of incarceration,
  • Inmate's race, and
  • Inmate's approximate dates in prison.

Federal Inmate Search

Searching by Name

  • You must enter the exact spelling of the inmate's FIRST and LAST name.
  • If the inmate's name is a common name, you may want to type in their age (as of today) and race to limit the number of results.
  • If you enter only an inmate's LAST name and an initial for the first name, you will NOT get a result.

Searching by Name Results

Searching by Number

  • If you know the inmate's BOP Register Number (ex: 12345-678), you can enter that to get an exact result.
  • You can also enter an inmate's DCDC Number, FBI Number or INS Number to get an exact result. The listing of the inmate will display their BOP Register Number.

Searching by Number Result

Things to Know About Federal Inmate Search Results

  • The data in the Federal Inmate Locator is updated daily.
  • Hispanic's race can either be Black or White.
  • Release dates are only considered absolute if they have already been released. For those still in custody the release date is either UNKNOWN, subject to change, or projected.
  • Unless an inmate shows as being RELEASED, their location is subject to change, as inmates are occasionally moved to another facility with no notice.
  • The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) allows certain information about Federal inmates to the general public if someone requests it. To obtain information beyond what is provided from the inmate locator and/or publicly available, submit a (Freedom of Information) FOIA request along with a properly completed Form DOJ-361. For further information, refer to the BOP's FOIA website.
  • If you are experiencing problems when using the inmate locator system, send a Technical Issue email (using the drop down menu) from the CONTACT US page. 
  • You may also contact the BOP by writing to:
    Att: Inmate Locator
    320 First St., N.W.
    Washington, DC 20534

ICE Online Detainee Locator System

How to Find Someone in the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Detainee Locator

When someone that is not a US Citizen gets arrested in the United States, and they are here illegally, depending on what state or city they are arrested in, the person may be turned over to ICE. 

Many states such as New York and California, as well as hundreds of US cities, have declared themselves 'sanctuary cities' and do not turn over foreigners here illegally, even if they are committing crimes in their jurisdiction.

However, when an alien here illegally is turned over to ICE, and sent to one of the over 100 Immigration Detention Centers in the United States, the only way to try and locate where they are being detained is using the Online Detainee Locator System.

There are two ways to search for an ICE Detainee:

You can look them up using their assigned A-Number.

  • An A-Number is a 9-digit number that either looks like this: A-123456789, or like this 123-456-789. This is required if you do not know their name.
    It is also called a Registration Number when on a visa, or a USCIS# when on a Green Card.
    If for whatever reason the A-Number you have does not have 9-digits, you need to add 0s (zeroes) to the front of the number until the number has 9-digits.

    That number might then look like this:  001234567.

You can also try and look them up by using their name.

  • In order for this to be effective, you need to have the exact name that is either on their paperwork, or the the name with the exact spelling that they gave ICE. This is required.
  • You also need to know the country of their birth, or the country of their birth that they gave ICE. This is required.
  • Knowing their Date of Birth is helpful but not required to find them in the system.

Important things to know about using the ICE Detainee Locator

  • You do not need to set up an account to use the Detainee Locator System.
  • A-Number stands for 'Alien Registration Number'.
  • The System does not have information on all detainees in custody.
  • Juvenile names are NOT in the System.
  • The Detainee Locator System is updated every 8 hours, sometimes sooner.
  • If the detainee is being moved to a new facility, the new location will not be shown until they have arrived and are processed. 
  • No warnings or prior notice are given in advance of a detainee being moved.
  • While being transferred to a different facility they may still be shown online as being in the original facility.
  • If you are planning a visit, always call before you come to confirm the detainee is still at the facility and has not been moved.
  • To visit a detainee you must have some type of government issued photo ID, or other identification when photo identification is unavailable for religious reasons.
  • If you are unable to find the detainee using the System, contact the ICE Office of Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) in the area where you believe the person's immigration case was initiated or the Detainee Reporting and Information Line (DRIL) at 888-351-4024.

Pamphlets in various languages with Instructions on how to use the Online Detainee Locator System: