North Carolina Inmate Search

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How Are Inmate Records in North Carolina Created and Stored?

North Carolina inmate records are created by all different types of law enforcement and corrections staff. The process begins when someone is arrested, and a RAP sheet is filled out. This initial document contains the suspect's name, address, physical description, and crime details. After that, as the inmate moves through the justice system, everything is documented and kept in the file. All these inmate records are maintained and stored by the North Carolina Department of Public Safety (DPS). They store inmate records online so that anyone can perform a North Carolina inmate search any time of day or night.

How to Find if Someone is in Jail or Prison in North Carolina?

The state of North Carolina is very progressive when it comes to helping the public find inmates in North Carolina prisons. The process for finding someone in jail may differ though. On the North Carolina Department of Public Safety's website, they have an inmate locator feature with various options. Not only can someone search using the "Inmate Locator,” but they can also use a system to create customized reports, search for sex offenders or use the NC SAVAN search tool which alerts victims to the change in an inmate's status or custody. The process for finding an inmate in a North Carolina prison is detailed below:

  1. Visit the North Carolina Department of Safety's website .
  2. From the main menu, choose "DPS Services" then "Offender Search."
  3. Choose the first option, "Inmate Locator."
  4. Enter the inmate's name. You can also choose to enter more information like the offender number, race, gender, age, birthdate, or status. Then hit the "Search" button.
  5. Review the list of results which shows the inmate's offender number, name, gender, race, birth date, and age. Click on the offender number in any row to see additional details about the inmate.

What Does North Carolina’s Prison System Look Like?

The North Carolina prison system is heavy into rehabilitation programs and services. They believe in re-education and advancement rather than just punishment and confinement. However, they have an extensive list of facilities for different types of demographics with units of different custody levels. The North Carolina prison system includes the following:

  • 61 State Prisons
  • 3 Federal Prisons
  • 6 Juvenile Detention Centers
  • Community corrections and reentry services and programs
  • Numerous county jails (spread over 100 counties)

Did you Know?

  • 0.35% of people in North Carolina are under correctional control, from which 82,466 are on probation, and 12,726 are on parole.
  • Every year, about 12,416 people walk out of prison gates in North Carolina, but people go to jail 1.0 times more each year
  • 92% of prison inmates in North Carolina are male, 8% female.
  • From 1979–80 to 2012–13, state and local government expenditures on corrections in North Carolina increased by 249 percent (from $472,831,919 to $1,648,330,000).
  • Between 2007 and 2016, the North Carolina prison population decreased by 6%

Types of Jails/Prisons in North Carolina

The state of North Carolina has sixty-one state prisons which hold all felons in the state who have broken serious laws. These individuals were sentenced to more than a year confinement. North Carolina has various community corrections programs and reentry services to help inmates reintegrate back into society to help reduce recidivism. They also have three federal prisons that hold inmates who have broken federal laws inside North Carolina. The Department of Safety oversees all state prisons and the six juvenile detention centers that house youth offenders. The state also has numerous county jails spread across the 100 counties.

How Many People are Locked up in North Carolina?

North Carolina’s prison system holds 35,697 residents in various kinds of correctional facilities, from which 35,595 residents are held in state prisons, 72 in juvenile correctional facilities.

Correctional Facilities: Totals:
Juvenile Correctional Facilities72
State Prisons35,595
Private Prisons30

North Carolina State Prisons

North Carolina has an extensive list of state prisons. Some of them house only female inmates, and the rest house all males. They each have different focuses and units for different levels of custody. A couple of them act as work farms. The list of state prisons in North Carolina includes:

  • Alexander Correctional Institution.
  • Anson Correctional Institution.
  • Lanesboro Minimum.
  • Avery-Mitchell Correctional Institution.
  • Mountain View Correctional Institution.
  • Bertie Correctional Institution.
  • Craggy Correctional Center.
  • Swannanoa Correctional Center for Women.
  • Foothills Correctional Institution.
  • Burke CRV.
  • Caldwell Correctional Center.
  • Carteret Correctional Center.
  • Caswell Correctional Center.
  • Dan River Prison Work Farm.
  • Catawba Correctional Center.
  • Columbus Correctional Institution.
  • Tabor Correctional Institution.
  • Craven Correctional Institution.
  • Davidson Correctional Center.
  • North Piedmont Correctional Center for Women (Temporary).
  • Forsyth Correctional Center.
  • Franklin Correctional Center.
  • Gaston Correctional Center.
  • Polk Correctional Institution.
  • Eastern Correctional Institution.
  • Greene Correctional Institution.
  • Maury Correctional Institution.
  • Caledonia Correctional Institution.
  • Harnett Correctional Institution.
  • Hoke Correctional Institution.
  • Hyde Correctional Institution.
  • Johnston Correctional Institution.
  • Sanford Correctional Center.
  • Lincoln Correctional Center.
  • Marion Correctional Institution.
  • Avery-Mitchell Correctional Institution.
  • Mountain View Correctional Institution.
  • Southern Correctional Institution.
  • Nash Correctional Institution.
  • New Hanover Correctional Institution.
  • Odom Correctional Institution.
  • Orange Correctional Center.
  • Pamlico Correctional Institution.
  • Pasquotank Correctional Institution.
  • Pender Correctional Institution.
  • Randolph Correctional Center.
  • Morrison Correctional Institution.
  • Lumberton Correctional Institution.
  • Robeson CRV.
  • Piedmont Correctional Institution.
  • Rutherford Correctional Center.
  • Sampson Correctional Institution.
  • Scotland Correctional Institution. 
  • Albemarle Correctional Institution.
  • Tyrrell Work Farm.
  • Central Prison.
  • North Carolina Correctional Institution for Women.
  • Wake Correctional Center.
  • Warren Correctional Institution.
  • Neuse Correctional Institution.
  • Wilkes Correctional Center.

How to Search for State Prison Inmates

The process for finding an inmate in a North Carolina state prison is very simple. They offer a few different options depending on the subject of the search. The basic process, though for looking up an inmate in state prison in North Carolina is as follows:

  1. Visit the North Carolina Department of Safety's website .
  2. From the main menu, choose "DPS Services" then "Offender Search."
  3. Choose the first option, "Inmate Locator."
  4. Enter the inmate's name. You can also choose to enter more information like the offender number, race, gender, age, birthdate, or status. Then hit the "Search" button.
  5. Review the list of results which shows the inmate's offender number, name, gender, race, birth date, and age. Click on the offender number in any row to see additional details about the inmate.

North Carolina Federal Prisons

In addition to the vast list of state prisons, North Carolina also has three federal prisons in the state to house federal inmates. These facilities are owned and operated by the Federal Bureau of Prisons (FOB). On their website, they have a page for each facility so the public can learn more or friends and family can find out about visitation and sending gifts or money. The list of federal prisons in North Carolina includes:

  • Butner FCC - mullet-unit complex with four distinct facilities each housing a different level of custom from low to max security.
  • Raleigh RRM - residential reentry office.
  • Rivers CI - A contracted correctional institution, operated by a private corporation housing 1,285 inmates.

How to Search for an Inmate in a North Carolina Federal Prison

The process for finding someone in federal prison is much different than for state prison. The entire federal prison system is separate from state prisons; therefore, anyone wanting to find an inmate in a North Carolina federal prison must contact the Federal Bureau of Prisons directly. The FOB does have an inmate locator feature on their website and a page for each facility with contact information, details on visitation, and information on how to send gifts and money.

North Carolina County Jails

The state of North Carolina has 100 counties. Most of them have a county Sheriff's Office that manages and operates a county jail. These facilities hold pretrial detainees and recently arrested suspects. They may stay in jail during the time of their initial hearing, their trial and then until sentencing to prison. Some may be released on bail or bond. Many of the local Sheriff's Offices have a website where the public can find out more about inmates and how the jails work. There is no centralized list of county jails, but the North Carolina Department of Public Safety would have information on each of them.

How to Perform a North Carolina Jail Inmate Search

Searching for an inmate in a county jail in North Carolina is pretty straightforward. The person searching could first contact the North Carolina Department of Public Safety and inquire. They have linked records and could point them in the right direction. The other option is to contact the Sheriff's Office directly. Some of these law enforcement agencies have a website with an inmate search feature or listings of current residents in county jail.

North Carolina Juvenile Detention Centers

North Carolina has six state-run juvenile detention centers and two local detention centers (these operate as a county jail for youths). These facilities hold youth offenders under the age of 18. During their stay, inmates receive treatment for addictions, mental and physical health screenings, and education. The list of juvenile detention centers in North Carolina includes:

State Detention Centers

  • Alexander Juvenile Detention Center.
  • Cabarrus Regional Juvenile Detention Center.
  • Cumberland Regional Juvenile Detention Center.
  • New Hanover Regional Juvenile Detention Center.
  • Pitt Regional Juvenile Detention Center.
  • Wake Juvenile Detention Center.

County Detention Centers

  • Durham County Youth Home. 
  • Guilford County Juvenile Detention Center.

Juvenile Population in Custody During 2011-2016 years

201120122013201420152016
Total11511968857272
Male11011564826768
Female544354

How to Search for Juvenile Detention Center Inmates

Most states in the U.S. keep juvenile records private until the offender is 18. Then the inmate has the option of applying to have their records expunged. Therefore, juvenile records are not stored online in a searchable database. However, someone searching for an inmate located in a North Carolina juvenile detention center can contact the North Carolina Department of Public Safety or the facility directly. The DPS can provide direction on visiting, sending gifts or money, and phone calls.

North Carolina Community Correctional Facilities

North Carolina cares deeply about recidivism, and therefore, they have extensive programs for reentry and community corrections to provide pre-release and post-release supervision. Their main goal is to protect the safety of the community and help inmates to reintegrate back into society successfully. They do this through education, assistance with parenting, mental illness, relationships, job placement, housing, and treatment for addictions.

How to Search for an Inmate in a North Carolina Community Corrections & Reentry Centers

The process for finding someone in a North Carolina community corrections and reentry center program is easy. The entire system is overseen and operated by the North Carolina Department of Public Safety. Therefore, all inmate records are contained in the same massive database. To find someone in community corrections in North Carolina, simply follow the instructions below:

  1. Visit the North Carolina Department of Safety's website .
  2. From the main menu, choose "DPS Services" then "Offender Search."
  3. Choose the first option, "Inmate Locator."
  4. Enter the inmate's name. You can also choose to enter more information like the offender number, race, gender, age, birthdate, or status. Then hit the "Search" button.
  5. Review the list of results which shows the inmate's offender number, name, gender, race, birth date, and age. Click on the offender number in any row to see additional details about the inmate.

Why are People Incarcerated in North Carolina?

There are roughly 67,000 incarcerated in North Carolina. More than half (36,000) are in state prison, 19,000 are in local jails, another 11,000 are in federal prisons, and about 470 are in juvenile detention. The most popular reason (17%) people are incarcerated in North Carolina is due to drug charges. The second biggest reason (12%) people are in prison in North Carolina is breaking and entering. After that, larceny is the next most popular crime (11%), leading to imprisonment. Only about 1% of the prison population committed murder, and 4% have committed sex crimes.

North Carolina’s Incarceration Rate and Statistics

North Carolina’s incarceration rate for year-end 2016 under state prison or local jail jurisdiction per 100,000 population was 339, which is lower than an average incarceration rate by 25%. The number of North Carolina prisoners at the year-end of 2016 was 35,697, from which 8% were female prisoners, whereas the number of male prisoners was 32,985 in 2016.

2011201220132014201520162017
Total362357355358352339341
Male699688683685673647649
Female42434448484850

Where Do North Carolina Inmates Go When They are Released?

Although North Carolina does not have any specific reentry facilities, they do have work-camps and pre-release programs designed to help reduce recidivism and help inmates get back on their feet before they are sent home. These programs are aimed at assisting inmates in getting a job, treatment for mental illness, and help with addictions. Therefore, most inmates after release will return home to family and friends.

How Does Parole Work in North Carolina?

Parole is an early-release program available to inmates who have behaved well while in prison. The North Carolina parole board has the authority to release an inmate after a portion of their sentence has been served. This is a supervisory program where the inmate must check-in regularly with a parole officer and follow other strict instructions. If they fail to comply with any of the rules, they will return to prison to finish out their sentence.

Parole Population

Type of Parole Entry: Number of Parolees:
State Parole Population: 12,726
Entries: 13,647
Exits: 12,388
Change in 2016: 8%

How Does Someone Get Probation in North Carolina?

Probation in North Carolina is a privilege doled out by judges who determine an offender to be a low-risk. The offender is allowed to remain free outside of prison but must comply with strict court-ordered rules. These rules include checking-in with a probation officer and routine drug tests. If they break any of these rules, they will immediately be arrested and go to prison.

Probation Statistics

Type of Parole Entry: Number of Parolees:
State Probation Population: 82,466
Entries: 48,995
Exits: 52,163
Change in 2016: -3%

North Carolina Department of Corrections

North Carolina Inmate Search