Access to Criminal Public Records
The criminal public records of the United States of America are maintained at different levels. Although the members of the general public are authorized to access certain information about the offense and offenders across all states of the USA, no single repository contains all the public criminal records of the nation. A public criminal record may be accessed for conducting background checks or in order to take precautionary measures for reasons of safety.
The National Crime Information Center was set up as part of the FBI in order to provide assistance to the various law enforcement bodies operating within the country. The database helps by providing invaluable information to the police as well as the federal agents which in turn is used to track down habitual offenders. The different law enforcement agencies also make use of this centralized database to run background checks on its employees as well as other people suspected of committing offenses.
The FBI, Transportation Security Administration as well as the local law enforcement agencies can access the data from NCIC. The public can access the information only after they submit their request along with valid reasons for access to the CJIS division of FBI. Details of the procedure as well as the eligibility criteria for citizens can be viewed by logging in to http://www.fbi.gov/hq/cjisd/fprequest.htm
Local Public Criminal Records
The county court houses usually maintain all records of criminal trials and hearings which can be accessed on request. The data from the state wide repositories of nineteen states is not considered to be restricted information and can be accessed by the general public.
The records of criminal convictions in Colorado are considered to be public and the information can be obtained by calling 303-239-4680. Similar information for the states of Connecticut, Kentucky and Texas are available at the numbers 860-685-8480, 502-573-2350 and 214-358-2840. The states of Florida, Hawaii, Iowa, Kansas, Maine and Missouri also make the information about the criminal convictions as well as the details of the offender public. The criminal records are considered to be Public in the states of Montana, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Washington and Wisconsin as well.
The Alabama Department of Public Safety (http://dps.alabama.gov/) provides public criminal records. The records of trial court cases are considered to be open in the state of Alaska http://www.courts.state.ny.us/apps/chrs/ .
The departments of corrections for both the states of Illinois (http://www.idoc.state.il.us/subsections/search/default.asp) and New Jersey (https://www6.state.nj.us/DOC_Inmate/capital) provide details of the inmates and records of the offenders on parole or probation. The information about the release dates of its inmates form a part of the record as well.
The Utah Bureau of Criminal Investigation handles all public requests for access to criminal records while the sex offender registry across all states of America provides information about the sex offenders and predators. The procedure as well as the eligibility for searching criminal records in the state of New York can be viewed at http://www.courts.state.ny.us/apps/chrs/ .
The official website of the Vermont State Police Department (http://www.dps.state.vt.us/vtsp/homicide/), on the other hand, provides information about the unsolved cases of homicide. The photographs of the offenders are displayed within the website as the state police actively seek help from the residents of the state.