Free Rhode Island Inmate Search: Find Prison & Jail Inmates

Free Rhode Island Inmate Search
Lookup jail and prison inmates in Rhode Island for free

Perform a free Rhode Island inmate search in minutes using this resource. Access to public records protects citizens’ rights by keeping the government upfront and transparent about its workings. The term inmate refers to anyone under government custody, whether in jail or prison.

In Rhode Island, all state criminal facilities operate under one department, regardless of the level. This step-by-step article provides resources to locate inmates at local, state, and federal levels and informs users on the process.

What Is the Distinction Between Prison & Jail Inmates?

Inmates are individuals currently held in custody, often because they’ve committed or been charged with a crime. There’s little distinction between prison and jail inmates in Rhode Island.

Most states divide their jails and prisons based on several factors. Jails are typically found at the county or city level, whereas prisons may be at the state or federal level.

In Rhode Island, this is not the case. All individuals, regardless of where they are in the legal system, go to the same facilities, which are all operated by the Rhode Island Department of Corrections (RIDOC).1

There is no differentiation between jails and prisons; rather, inmates are placed in facilities based on security level. Women go to their own separate facilities.

However, there is a major distinction between state-operated prisons and federal prisons, and this should be kept in mind when conducting an inmate search in Rhode Island. In a federal prison, inmates have been charged or convicted of a federal crime. The Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) oversees federal prisoners in facilities spread across the country.

How To See Who’s in Rhode Island Jails

Because all incarcerated individuals will go to one of six facilities across the state of Rhode Island, completing an inmate search is a streamlined process.2 This is especially true because Rhode Island considers such information public record. However, it also means there’s little differentiation between those in jail or prison at first glance.

Two facilities can act as jails for those not yet processed through the legal system: the Anthony P. Travisono Intake Service Center for men and the Gloria McDonald Women’s Facility for women.3, 4 This resource covers how to find criminal and arrest records in Rhode Island for contact details for county jails, and information about how to perform inmate searches online if this option is available in that county.

RIDOC provides an Inmate Search online tool to identify those in jail or prison across the state.5 The tool is the same regardless of an offender’s status as long as they are in Rhode Island Department of Corrections (RIDOC) custody.1

Prior to beginning an inmate search, the page will show a disclaimer stating that, while every effort is made to ensure information is accurate, it may not be perfectly up to date. Users must agree to the disclaimer to move to the search portion of the tool.

The search form has several fields to fill out, including:

  • Inmate ID
  • Last name
  • First name
  • Name type (select whether to use a first, last or both names)
  • Race
  • Gender
  • Minimum age
  • Maximum age
  • Last known city

Despite so many fields, only a partial name is necessary to generate results. However, entering a common name into just one field is likely to yield dozens or more results, which can lengthen the process. Fill in as much as possible to reduce potential results.

Screenshot of the inmate search tool provided by the Rhode Island Department of Corrections with fields provided for inmate ID, last name, first name, name type, race, gender, minimum age, maximum age, and last known city.
Source: Rhode Island Department of Corrections5

After running the search, results appear in table format, listing the same information that users can fill out, plus the security level the individual is under. Clicking on an inmate’s details on the left of the table generates even more information. Here, users will discover sentencing and charge information, including:

  • Sentencing case number
  • Counts
  • Date sentencing was imposed, and the retroactive date
  • Inmate status
  • Location
  • Description of charges
  • Good time release date
  • Inmate charges
  • Date of crime commission
  • Criminal case number
  • Bail type and amount
  • Disposition and disposition date
Screenshot of an inmate's details from the Rhode Island Department of Corrections displaying the inmate ID, name, name type, race, gender, age, last residence, and security, followed by the past inmate sentences including the following information: case number, count, date imposed, retro date, sentence status, term, description, and good time release date.
Source: Rhode Island Department of Corrections6

To determine whether an individual is in jail or awaiting a trial, review these records and look for those in either the Anthony P. Travisono Intake Service Center or the Gloria McDonald Women’s Facility. For women, further research may be needed to identify whether they have already been sentenced, which the results will display.

Check Whether Someone Is in a State Prison: Rhode Island Inmate Search

The process is largely the same when searching for inmates in state prisons, as was detailed in the previous sections because Rhode Island operates under a unified correctional department.

The Rhode Island Department of Corrections (RIDOC) provides an Inmate Search online tool to help interested parties locate individuals who are in jail or prison across the state.1, 5 Details of how to use this tool are provided above. This tool can be used to find individuals who have already been sentenced, as long as they’re in RIDOC custody. Individuals’ disposition information and sentencing will populate in the search results.

While performing an inmate search in Rhode Island, some tools that offer guidance for victims – helping them access state-level resources – may be useful.

They can also inform friends and family members of inmates of the correct contact and visitation processes. Browse through these other helpful governmental and government-endorsed tools:

How To Run a Federal Prisoner Lookup

The Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) operates 122 institutions across the nation where prisoners are held.7 Information about these inmates is available through the use of an online Find an Inmate tool.8

By entering an inmate’s last name and first initial or an identifying number (the tool accepts a Board of Prisons (BOP) register number, DC Department of Corrections (DCDC) number, Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) number or Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) number, their results will display.

Screenshot of the Federal Bureau of Prisons' find an inmate by number tool displaying a disclaimer about the possibility of the details being not up to date, followed by the drop down menu for number search options including BOP register number, DCDC number, FBI number, and INS number, along with the number input field beside the menu.
Source: Federal Bureau of Prisons8

However, users should remember that it requires exact information to return results. In the case that an inmate has a more common name, the tool allows users to also input race, age and gender to help locate the correct individual.

Results include basic information about the inmate, including:

  • Name
  • Register number
  • Age
  • Race
  • Sex
  • Release date
  • Location

Clicking on the individual’s name reveals slightly more options, including the links to call or email the inmate, send them mail, packages or money, visit them or report a concern These links will populate regardless of whether the individual is currently in custody or not. It’s common to encounter former prisoners who have already been released using this tool because it pulls from a database of everyone who has been in custody since 1982.

Records from before 1982 have been archived with the National Archives Records Administration (NARA). NARA has over 200 years worth of federal court proceedings; copies of criminal cases can be requested online. However, fees may apply to cover the cost of labor involved in the search.9

If searching with NARA does not provide the desired records, the next step is to try using the Public Access to Court Electronic Records (PACER) online tool. This allows users to request federal court records by a specific court or national index.

To use PACER, individuals need to create an account, and any requests are subject to potential fees.10 There are some options to receive records at no cost if the searcher qualifies for one of the many exemptions offered.11

Access to public records provides citizens with government transparency, protecting civil liberties and keeping the people informed; performing a Rhode Island inmate search is just one way citizens can empower themselves with such knowledge.


1Rhode Island Department of Corrections. (2023, July 3). Contact Us. Retrieved April 1, 2024, from <>

2Rhode Island Department of Corrections. (2022, May 31). Facilities. Retrieved April 1, 2024, from <>

3Rhode Island Department of Corrections. (2024, March 29). Anthony P. Travisono Intake Service Center. Retrieved April 1, 2024, from <>

4Rhode Island Department of Corrections. (2024, February 1). Gloria McDonald Women’s Facility. Retrieved April 1, 2024, from <>

5Rhode Island Department of Corrections. (2024, February 20). Inmate Search. Retrieved April 1, 2024, from <>

6Rhode Island Department of Corrections. (2024). Search Details. Retrieved April 1, 2024, from <>

7Federal Bureau of Prisons. (n.d.). Our Locations. Retrieved April 1, 2024, from <>

8Federal Bureau of Prisons. (n.d.). Find an inmate. Retrieved April 1, 2024, from <>

9The U.S. National Archives and Records Administration. (2018, September 18). NARA Reproduction Fees as of April 20, 2018. Retrieved April 1, 2024, from <>

10Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts . (n.d.). PACER Pricing: How fees work. Public Access to Court Electronic Records (PACER). Retrieved April 1, 2024, from <>

11Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts . (n.d.). Options to Access Records if you Cannot Afford PACER Fees. Public Access to Court Electronic Records (PACER). Retrieved April 1, 2024, from <>