close

Privacy guaranteed - Your email is not shared with anyone.

Background check on a stranger?

Discussion in 'The Okie Corral' started by CBumpkin, Mar 8, 2012.

  1. CBumpkin

    CBumpkin

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2010
    Messages:
    75
    Likes Received:
    0
    Something I've always wondered about when I run across a really goofy person. Is it possible for an individual outside of law enforcement to legally obtain a background check on someone, mainly criminal history? And if so, how would one go about it?

    I have no one particularly in mind, I'm just curious.:dunno:
     
  2. DScottHewitt

    DScottHewitt EMT-B

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2000
    Messages:
    15,908
    Likes Received:
    7
    Location:
    Waynesboro, VA
    There are websites that do it. It costs, though.


    Some of them advertise on the TV
     

  3. ZekerMan

    ZekerMan ZekerMan

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2010
    Messages:
    1,487
    Likes Received:
    87
    Location:
    Kansas
    The websites will give you a hint....then they want the credit card.
     
  4. Adjuster

    Adjuster

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2006
    Messages:
    14,853
    Likes Received:
    2,178
    Location:
    Deerfield Beach Florida USA
    If you know anyone that owns a business or is in charge of hiring at a business they usually have an account set up with one of the agencies for unlimited background checks.


    /
     
  5. skeeter7

    skeeter7 Brass Vulture

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2010
    Messages:
    10,266
    Likes Received:
    142
    Location:
    Rhode Island
    In our state (RI), you can look up people online by name in the Court Connect database and are given court cases past and present of people with those names with just the year of birth attached, no month and day so if you know at least that much you can figure out someone's criminal background pretty quickly for free.
     
  6. ChadSin

    ChadSin

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2010
    Messages:
    178
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Fort Worth
    I have a rental house and every time I get a new tennant the wife runs a background check first. Like the other guy said, theres lots of websites that do it.
     
  7. Brian Lee

    Brian Lee Drop those nuts

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2008
    Messages:
    9,539
    Likes Received:
    429
    Location:
    Up a tree.
    I went to one of those web sites and paid something like 35 bucks to run a check on myself just to see how much info they'd get. Totally useless.. The information they gave me was almost entirely on other people with the same name and very little about me, and there was little if any clue that this was not all on the same person. At least I was glad to see that none of the guys with my name had bad criminal records, since eventually somebody will probably look up this same crap and think it's all me.

    Interestingly enough, they had no info at all about the one time I was actually arrested. In Florida they used to take you away in handcuffs for riding a motorcycle with just a car license, and I was given a free ride to a one hour stint in jail. The web site didn't find one word about that incident, and only found one previous address during a span of years when there had actually been five addresses.

    I cringe at the thought of all the misjudgements people must be making because of the low quality results some of these sites are giving. If you are going to use them to make decisions about the character of others, you should test it by running a check on yourself first, using the same site you are planning to use for checking up on someone else. You might be surprised, or just pissed off, by what you find attributed to you on the internet.
     
  8. *ASH*

    *ASH* in hell everyone loves popcorn

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2008
    Messages:
    3,666
    Likes Received:
    3,593
    Location:
    barbed
    i got a few rental houses, and i check everyone , ofcourse i got friends in the right places .

    never tried online sites .
     
  9. GLWyandotte

    GLWyandotte Señor Member

    Joined:
    May 31, 2011
    Messages:
    4,841
    Likes Received:
    84
    Location:
    Somewhere Between Heaven and Hell
    In Minnesota, just google Mn Court Records. Agree to their terms, fill in the blanks and you can access anyone's criminal history in the estate.
    You can usually spot the paysites if their suffix isn't .gov
     
  10. Highspeedlane

    Highspeedlane NRA Life Member

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2008
    Messages:
    3,345
    Likes Received:
    3
    Location:
    New England
    I'm not sure I'd trust the typical "background check" service to have complete documentation, particularly as it applies to criminal convictions.

    At some point I recall a news story from around here detailing how many criminal convictions were not getting properly documented. As a result you had numerous instances of felons walking around who would come up clean on police initiated background check.

    I guess the website services collect whatever documents are a matter of public record and charge you to access them. Better than nothing I suppose.
     
  11. series1811

    series1811 Enforcerator. CLM

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2003
    Messages:
    11,385
    Likes Received:
    17
    Location:
    Retired, but not expired.
    We use the paid background sites in law enforcement as well. While we have some internal databases that contain some information not in public websites, it is amazing what comes up on the public site checks, and we pay for subscriptions to sites like Autotrack and Lexis/Nexis..
     
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2012
  12. silentpoet

    silentpoet

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2007
    Messages:
    27,022
    Likes Received:
    11,972
    Location:
    This Old Caddy
    My last background check had an address history back to 1971. I was born in 1975. It also showed other addresses my dad had lived as mine. Not too impressed.
     
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2012
  13. Mr. Blandings

    Mr. Blandings

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2001
    Messages:
    938
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Florida
    "Private" background checks are generally something that require some interpretive skill and a knowledge of the holes in your provider's information.

    I was closely related to running background checks on volunteers for a large non-profit organization for several years. Up front the private providers will sell you the "Super Nationwide Criminal History Search", but they won't tell you what the information is based on. They do not have access the National Crime Information Computer (NCIC), so they use alternative sources of information. The most common is purchasing batches of criminal court records from local Clerks of the Courts from jurisdictions across the country. There are some jurisdictions that will not sell this information, so that makes a "hole" where something may have occurred without getting reported.

    The limits of a name search are also problematic because, as mentioned by a previous poster, you may gets hits on multiple people with the same name. If you can narrow down using geographic location and/or date of birth it will make it easier.

    Depending on where you live or where the person in question is located, some jurisdiction will offer significant "public records" accessibility online. Check the local law enforcement agencies (police/sheriff/state police) for arrest history records; the jail for booking records; the clerk of the court for court records (civil and criminal - restraining orders or injunctions of protection are often a civil matter); the department of corrections/bureau of prisons/office of probation/etc for info; sex offender databases on the local/state/national level.

    If you start studying the resources you'll figure out how to make the best use of information to build the bigger picture.
     
  14. tarpleyg

    tarpleyg

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2002
    Messages:
    3,153
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    North Carolina
    I recently bought one on a state bureau of investigation web site. Cost me $35 but I got what I needed. Fortunately, I had name and DOB so the info was targeted to that specific person. Before I went this route, I read up on the available web sites performing these services and I was not impressed. Most of what you get is junk.

    Greg
     
  15. Angry Fist

    Angry Fist Dehumanizer® Lifetime Member

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2009
    Messages:
    39,527
    Likes Received:
    8,196
    Location:
    Hellbilly Hill
    Some sheriff's departments have it for free. Hillsborough County in Florida has a great database.