The Illinois State Police retains criminal history records within the state of Illinois. The State Police website enables searches for a wide range of criminal records.
What Are Criminal Records?
Criminal records are public records of all crimes for which an individual has been convicted or pleaded guilty. A criminal record could include information on local, state or federal crimes as well as identifying information for an individual. The identifying information often includes the person’s name, date of birth, residential address, any known aliases, copies of fingerprints, and one or more identifying photographs, including a face pic.
A criminal record might include:
- Prior arrests
- Pending criminal charges
- Acquitted charges
- Dismissed charges
- Arrest warrants
Criminal records include misdemeanor and felony crimes. Both are listed on criminal record reports.
How Are Criminal Records Used?
Criminal records often are used by third parties conducting background checks for security clearances, military service and prospective employees. They also commonly are done on residential applicants, loan applications, firearms purchases and a variety of other legitimate reasons. The background checks help to affirm a person’s history and possible trustworthiness or vulnerability.
How Can Someone Access Your Criminal Records?
Unless a criminal record is sealed or expunged by a court of law, it is a public record that virtually anyone could obtain. All that is required is the individual’s name while performing a court records search or a police records search. Any relevant results will show because all criminal records are a matter of public information – unless a court says otherwise.
Anyone could access the Illinois State Police or Illinois Courts websites and obtain criminal records on virtually anyone. Because criminal records are public records, anyone can view them. The records are kept public so that the local community can the extent of criminal activity occurring within community boundaries.
In many ways, the amount of criminal activity that occurs – especially violent crimes, like robbery, rape and murder – is a direct reflection of a local community’s general health. Criminal records also help communities to know who may or may not pose a threat to community health through ongoing criminal activity.
Criminal sexual activity can be especially heinous and include rape or sex crimes against children. State law requires anyone convicted of a sex crime in Illinois or who is convicted of a sex crime in another state and moves to Illinois to register as a sex offender. The State Police maintains the Illinois Sex Offender Registry, which provides information on registered sex offenders and where they live so that others in the community can know of potential threats.
How Can You Request a Criminal Record?
You can obtain a criminal record on yourself or another individual for criminal convictions in Illinois by accessing the State Police website or the Illinois Courts website and conducting the relevant search. The Illinois courts system includes information on criminal cases in the federal, state, and circuit courts systems. Federal prosecutions are conducted through the respective federal courts, which also maintain records.
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