How To Check Criminal Records

Checking employee background

There are a few simple steps involved in finding a person's criminal history - if you want to go further and learn how to do a detailed search or even get a private investigator's license, then you may want to pursue a degree in criminal justice.

There are a lot of reasons why you might wish to find out whether someone has existing criminal records. You might have become acquainted with someone from a dating service or a chat room who suddenly wanted to meet up with you, and you want to know if he or she has a criminal background. If you're looking into hiring someone you do not know through family or friends, you might not feel safe unless you've at least done some sort of a background check on him or her, especially if it involves letting that person into an important position in your company, or if you have to entrust your store or even your home to the care of that person for most of the day.

An employment background check that relies on people that have also been referred by the employee you're looking to hire is acting on a lot of faith. Thankfully, criminal records are easy to check online, and you might even find birth, death and marriage records, bankruptcy records, sexual offender records, and records for other criminal offenses like theft and drug abuse, and many more from an online source. These are what you can do to help you in your criminal search:

  1. Do a Google search of the person's name and the city he or she might have lived in. If there has been a news report involving that person's arrest, you have a chance to come across it in this way.

  2. You can access, usually for a fee, an online people searches site, which can also do criminal background checks for you. Some of these online sites are, Intelius, and SentryLink. Remember that checking on another person's background is looking into his private life. Do this only if you have some reason to be suspicious.

  3. Look at the website of the city where that person has lived. A lot of government sites are starting to make their records available for free and easy perusal online, and even if the site you found doesn't, it might tell you how else you can request a person's criminal record from that city's government.

  4. For the state of Wisconsin, you only have to navigate into their court records website, read and agree to the State of Wisconsin Court Records Agreement, and fill in the necessary information, such as the person's first name and last name. Putting in the person's middle name, birth date or case number isn't necessary, but you have the option to add those in if you know them. If you have typed in the information, click search, and that person's records will appear in rows if he or she has any. And then you simply have to click them to view these records.

  5. For the state of Oklahoma, you simply have to follow this link: Click on "Search Dockets" to conduct your search for the person's criminal record. The only necessary information is the person's name. The Oklahoma public records for that person will then be open to you.

You can learn more about doing detailed criminal background checks by taking a few relevant criminal justice courses online. 


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