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Ohio Inmate Search

An Ohio inmate search gives the public information on inmates incarcerated in the state’s correctional facilities. The Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction manages all inmates' information. It provides the public with important information, including prison and jail records, how to contact inmates, and how to visit them, to name a few. 


What Are Ohio Inmate Records?

Ohio inmate records refer to any document related to inmates and prisoners and the criminal charges against them. The Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction, together with the county’s sheriff, oversees and governs every prison and jail facility in the state. Under the Ohio Revised Code, inmate records are public. Anyone can request an inmate record in the state using the following channels:

  • An in-person visit to the county sheriff's office
  • Via mail using a FOIA request form
  • Using the ODRC Offender Search online
  • Ohio VINE Service
  • Other third-party websites like Infopay

An Ohio inmate record may contain information including an inmate’s full name and any other alias, mug shots, physical description, criminal charges, bond or bail conditions, if any, and their release date. 

When performing an Ohio inmate search, third-party sites are much easier to use. However, some information may vary and may not be as updated as the available government channels. People who request inmate records using third-party sites should know the inmate’s name and the county where they are held. 

Note that all inmate records are available for public inspection except for those involving juvenile delinquents.  


What Are Ohio Prison and Jail Records?

To date, Ohio has 108 jails spread across its 88 counties, 28 state prisons, and three juvenile facilities. Ohio is also the first state to have privately run prisons. 

The ODRC also follows a protocol of leveled classification system for incarcerated individuals depending on their security risk. The classification levels are defined according to a mix of factors listed below:

  • Notoriety of offenses
  • Mental and emotional stability
  • Behavior history (disruptive, violent, or assaultive)
  • Criminal history
  • Escape history
  • Type of sentencing
  • Eligibility for release
  • Age and sex

The lowest level of classification for incarcerated individuals in Ohio prisons is Level 1. The highest level, which requests more security and supervision, is Level 4. An inmate can be placed under a special level called ERH if they lead others to commit actions that are disruptive, violent, predatory, riotous, or considered a threat to the correctional facility where they are held. 


How To Perform Inmate Search in Ohio?

Individuals interested to perform an Ohio inmate search can do so through the state’s department website. The Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction has an online offender search feature where the public can request information on incarcerated individuals, violators at large, and also individuals under APA supervision. The only information needed to perform an inmate search using the ODRC website is the inmate’s first and last name or unique ODRC number if available. 

Any requestors can also use third-party sites that offer inmate searches in Ohio, though inmate information may vary.  


How To Contact an Inmate in Ohio?

Friends and families can contact an inmate in Ohio via mail or by phone. 

Note that all mail, including emails, are checked and inspected to ensure that there is no contraband included in each. Nude photos, cash, money orders, checks, and any other similar items are considered contraband by the ODRC. Colored envelopes are not allowed and shall be discarded. 

To contact inmates by phone, individuals may use the ODRC phone services available and deposit funds to make calls via Connect Network, which is available for download for both iOS and Android devices. 


How To Visit an Inmate in Ohio?

Inmate visits to Ohio require a BD Veritor System for the detection of SARS-CoV-2 for visitors. Visitors also need to fill out an application form and provide the following personal and inmate information:

  • Visitor’s name
  • Address
  • Proof of address, such as a utility bill
  • The institution where the inmate is held
  • Inmate’s name
  • Inmate’s unique number
  • Visitor’s relationship to the inmate
  • Inmate’s child information (if applicable)

Visitors must wear proper and appropriate clothing and will be subject to clear the metal detector at the correctional facility. The absence of a visitor application form, inappropriate clothing, and not clearing the metal detectors may result in a visitor not being allowed inside the facility. Visitors with a minor child should also sign an authorization if they are not the child’s legal guardian. 


How To Send Money to an Inmate in Ohio?

Only approved friends and relatives can send money to inmates in Ohio via mail through money orders, online, or through telephone debit accounts. 

Approved individuals can send money orders via mail using this form and cannot exceed $200 unless approved by the warden. For online payments, Connect Network accepts major credit cards like Visa and Mastercard. Note that online payments have a convenience fee of $3.5 to $5.5 for credit card payments plus an additional 3.5% of the total funds sent. The same fees apply to telephone debit accounts. Once approved, visitors can deposit funds by calling 1-888-988-4PMT (4768) toll-free. Remember to use Site ID 86 when prompted.

Counties in Ohio