How to find out if someone has been arrested and booked into your local jail as an inmate or prisoner?
To find out if someone you know has been recently arrested and booked into your local Regional Jail, it’s best to call the jail’s booking line, you can use a Google search to find the correct number to call and inquire about a person who may be in custody.
After an arrest, information on an offender may not be publicly released for several hours.
If you do not want to call the jail you may be able to use an arrest inquiry search tool provided by the arresting agency or the facility holding the inmate.
How long is the booking process?
After an arrest, a suspect will next be transported to the local police department or the Sheriff’s Department for booking.
Booking requires multiple steps and can take several hours depending on how many inmates are processed during intake, many attorneys will advise that an offender remain silent and not offer any additional information about the crime which they have been accused of because anything they say or do may be recorded and is admissible in a court of law.
Booking can take from an hour to 24 hours or more. It depends on the number of inmates that are awaiting processing, the number of correctional officers on duty at the time, and the behavior of the offender.
If the inmate is intoxicated and/or violent, the COs may decide to stick the offender in a holding cell or drunk tank for several hours until they become more manageable. They may also be restrained after becoming violent or uncooperative.
What happens during the booking process?
The booking includes having an inmate’s photo (mugshot) and fingerprints taken. It includes a lot of questions about an inmate’s personal history and state of mind. This is for classification so more dangerous inmates are housed together in the same pod or block. If someone is accused of a serious felony, their DNA may be taken. Inmates will be checked for warrants and immigration holds in their local jurisdiction and other jurisdictions.
If someone was arrested for a DUI / DWI / OWI offense, and refused a field sobriety or breathalyzer test, they may also be forced to give a blood sample.
New inmates will undergo a full body search. This includes bending over, spreading their cheeks in the direction of an officer, and coughing. They will also be walked through a metal detector or x-ray machine to ensure no contraband is introduced into the jail.
The arresting jurisdiction will ask about gang affiliations, tattoos, medical conditions, prescribed medication, recreational drug use, and allergies. Additionally, they may try to determine if they are suicidal, and other relevant information that will help with determining their cell assignments.
What happens to an inmate’s personal property?
During the arrest and booking process, an offender will also have all their personal property confiscated and held for either their release from jail or with the offender’s approval, released to a friend or family member.
Personal property includes the clothing they are wearing, money, wallets, purses, cell phones, jewelry, body rings, earrings, watches, and even glasses if they are deemed a security risk. If they are allowed to keep their shoes or sneakers, the laces are removed.
What happens at booking?
At some point, an arrestee will be allowed to make a phone call to a person of their choice to notify them of their arrest, and/or arrange a bond or bail for their release.
If the offender is being detained and housed while awaiting arraignment or longer than a pre-arranged release, the jail will provide a garment, a meal, slip-on shoes, a blanket, sheets, soap, a toothbrush, toothpaste, and a towel.
Before inmates are dressed and brought to their housing units, they will be forced to take a shower and undergo a disinfectant treatment for body and hair lice, scabies, or other pests that may be residing on their person.
Alex Adekola is a thought leader in the reputation management industry who has targeted mugshot publishers since 2012. Alex Adekola is the longest-serving reputation and crisis management strategist and has written a book on mugshot removal. He is the creator and director of strategy at RemoveMyMugshot.org and Incept Technologies, LLC.