How Do You Find a Federal Inmate’s Photo?

A federal inmate’s photo can be found on the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) website. However, photos of federal inmates released before 1982 are not available online as these records are not in the BOP’s inmate management system.

To obtain an inmate record and photo from 1982 or earlier, a direct request must be sent to the BOP. When the BOP receives a request for a record before this date, it will search the available records by hand. Many of these records are held at the U.S. National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). The NARA can also be contacted directly with older database requests. Both the NARA and the BOP require the following information about the inmate to process the request: the full name, date of birth or age at time of incarceration, race and the approximate dates in prison.

When looking up a federal inmate online, the results will have data including the inmate’s name, register number, age, race, sex, release date and location. The location is particularly useful information as it informs people where the inmates are located if he or she is still in BOP custody. An inmate may be shown as being “in transit,” a “halfway house” or in a prison.