Are Nebraska Inmate Records Public Information?
Yes. In Nebraska, inmate records are accessible to the public under the freedom of information statutes outlined in Neb. Rev. Stat. §§ 84-712 to 84-712.09, as well as any other relevant state law governing public release. Consequently, the public can request inmate records from corrections departments (such as a local sheriff's office) without offering a statement of purpose or demonstrating eligibility. Correctional agencies also provide Nebraska inmate locators online as an informational service to further public safety and information regarding incarcerated individuals serving short/long-term or life sentences in the state.
Notwithstanding, Nebraska laws prohibit the release of certain information in an inmate record. For such documents, disclosure is prohibited entirely, except to persons who have the inmate's permission (where applicable), a court order, or are otherwise entitled to obtain the record by law. Examples of confidential Nebraska inmate records include:
- An inmate's medical or mental health records (Neb. Rev. Stat. §§ 71-8401 through 71-8407; 83-178)
- Inmate visitation records
- Presentence investigation reports
- Inmate classification records and recommendations
- Disciplinary infraction reports
Individuals who need more information on inmate record exemptions in Nebraska can consult § 84-712.05 of the state's public records law or review the Nebraska Attorney General's public records site. The Nebraska Department of Correctional Services' public records requests site also provides for further research (though the exemptions mentioned are tailored to public records requests for state prisoner records).
Nebraska Inmate Search
Nebraska inmate records contain all personal and official information about inmates detained in facilities across the state. These facilities include locally managed jails and detention centers, as well as state-run prisons, penal institutions, and state penitentiaries.
The data contained in Nebraska inmate records include the names, birth dates, genders, and nationalities of inmates, as well as an inmate's criminal history, current charge(s) and sentence(s), bond conditions, relevant court information, and release date. Nebraska inmate mugshots may also be found in such records. Per the Nebraska Public Records Law, inmate records may be provided to interested persons who want to find out who's in custody or find someone in jail.
Inmate records are considered public in the United States and, therefore, are made available by both traditional governmental agencies as well as third-party websites and organizations. Third-party websites may offer an easier search, as these services do not face geographical limitations. However, because third-party sites are not government-sponsored, the information obtained through them may vary from official channels. To find inmate records using third-party aggregate sites, requesting parties must provide:
- The location of the sought-after record, including the state, county, and city where the inmate resides.
- The name of the person listed in the record, unless it is a juvenile.
How to Find Someone in Jail in Nebraska
All local correctional facilities in Nebraska maintain records on persons sent to their custody. Therefore, to find someone in a jail in Nebraska or find out why someone is in jail, an individual should request a search of the relevant jail facility's inmate records. Usually, to execute the search, the jail administration will require the inmate's name or ID number.
Members of the public can also access online inmate lookup systems offered by correctional departments to find out what jail someone is in.
How to Send Money to an Inmate in Nebraska Prisons and Jails?
Nebraska state inmates may be sent funds for in-jail purchases in the commissary and the canteen. All inmate account payments are made using JPay, which also allows the incarcerated individual's family and friends to send electronic photographs, emails, and E-cards.
To send money via JPay, interested persons may establish an account on the vendor's web page or call (800) 574-5729. To obtain information regarding the recipient inmate, the user may conduct a search on the BOP Inmate Locator. All deposits require the inmate's BOP register number as well as his/her first and last name.
To use the vendor's email service, interested persons may log in to a personal JPay account, purchase a stamp online, and send a message. This will also require the recipient's personal information. Photographs, as well as a 30-second video, can be attached to each email, all at affordable rates. What's more? Emails are received within 48 hours, and the e-stamps are even more affordable than traditional stamps.
How to Get Approved to Visit an Inmate in Nebraska Prisons and Jails
The visitation guidelines of most Nebraska state correctional institutions vary with each facility because of the inmates detained, the housing location, facility capacity, and a variety of other factors. Thus, intending visitors are advised to review the visitation policy of the specific facility before proceeding with any visit. Nonetheless, the NSCS established some visitation procedures that serve as a great jump-off point for most facilities in its jurisdiction.
As per state laws, only persons who are included on an inmate's visitation list may be allowed to see an inmate. The list comprises persons who, by a background check. have met the eligibility requirements of the department. To be included, the visitor must download and legibly fill out a visitation application, which must be submitted to the following:
Nebraska State Penitentiary
P.O. Box 22500
Lincoln, NE 68542
Subsequent to processing the application, approved visitors will be provided with a visitor pass, which should be used to enter the facility along with the visitor's government-issued photo ID. Visitors must pass routine checks before accessing the facility, and all non-adult visitors must present a valid form of identification and be escorted by an approved adult visitor. For further information regarding the process, interested persons may contact the corrections staff or the facility where the inmate is being held.
How to Contact Inmates in Nebraska
Nebraska state inmates may be contacted through channels provided by the holding facility. To obtain information on inmate correspondence, interested members of the public are advised to contact the state facilities individually. In many cases, the inmate may be allowed to make outgoing phone calls as well as send and receive mail.
Inmate phones often require that the provided phones be prepaid. Payments may be made to the institution's designated vendor via debit or credit card. Additionally, all persons who are contacted by inmates often need to be included in the inmate's approved list. This may require an official application.
On the other hand, most facilities have strict rules regarding incoming mail. Inmates are generally disallowed from receiving items such as care packages, food, and items other than photographs of specific sizes. All mail that does not meet the compliance requirements of the department may be returned to the sender or confiscated. Outgoing mail must include the names and IDs of the receiving inmates and a return address for the center.
How to Find a County Inmate Roster in Nebraska
In its simplest form, a county inmate roster in Nebraska is a list of persons currently held in a jail facility or detention center. This roster is typically available on a sheriff's office or corrections division's website as a browseable list alphabetized by inmates' last names or a database searchable with a few pieces of information (e.g., an inmate's last name or booking date). Nevertheless, individuals who access the roster can retrieve information like an inmate's name, booking number and date, charges, bond amount, release date, custody status, etc. For counties whose sheriffs do not maintain official websites, the county inmate roster may be found on the local government's website.
Sometimes, a county inmate roster may be called an inmate search or lookup site. Some sheriffs may also refer to their rosters as inmate locators.
Nebraska State Prisons and County Jails: Understanding the Difference
Nebraska's prison system consists of 10 state prisons and 63 county jails. The Nebraska state prisons and county jails are under the oversight of the NDCS. However, state prisons are directly managed by the Nebraska Department of Correctional Services, while county jails are managed by their respective county sheriff's offices. Ideally, state prisons hold individuals sentenced to a prison term of more than a year or a life sentence, whereas county jails hold inmates serving sentences of less than a year. However, some NDCS inmates are confined in contracted county jail facilities.
The facilities run by the Nebraska Department of Correctional Services (NDCS) have a total inmate capacity of over 4,500 inmates. (As of 2021, the NDCS facilities had a design capacity of 3,635 inmates and an operational capacity of 4,544 inmates. Neb. Rev. Stat § 83-961 defines "design capacity" as the total designed bed space in NDCS facilities and "operational capacity" as 125% of the design capacity.)
By the end of 2021, the average daily population (ADP) of inmates housed in Nebraska state prisons, held in private prisons, or under state supervision in county jails was 5,694. This is an increase of 6.43% from the year-end 2020 average daily population of 5,351.
On the other hand, the rated capacity of all county jails in Nebraska is 5,080 inmates. As of midyear 2019, the jail population in Nebraska was 4,200.
According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics Prisoners in 2020 report, Nebraska's adult incarceration rate is 269 per 100,000 residents. This is lower than the national average incarceration rate of 358 per 100,000 residents at the end of 2020.
How to Perform an Inmate Search in Nebraska State Prisons
The NDCS website allows interested members of the public to conduct a free inmate search by name and housing facility locations using the Nebraska Prison Inmate Search Tool and Facility Index. Using the Nebraska prison inmates search tool, incarcerated individuals may be searched by their first or last name or designated DOC number for information regarding the inmate's housing location.
Parties can use this tool to find a person in jail as well as details of the inmate's personal data, sentence type (short/long-term or life sentence), parole eligibility and dates, projected release date, and related information. If an inmate cannot be tracked using the inmate lookup tool, the Public Records Unit may be contacted as an alternative. Queries may be made to the mail or email of the unit at:
Public Disclosure Unit
Nebraska Department of Correctional Services
P.O. Box 94661
Lincoln, NE 68509
Note: The Nebraska Prison Inmate Search Tool cannot execute a federal inmate search, nor can it provide information on inmates held locally.
How Do I Find Out an Inmate Release Date?
An inmate's release date is among the publicly available information obtained using the online inmate search tool. However, under certain circumstances, the record custodian will restrict access to the exact inmate release date. In such cases, only the inmate's immediate family members, victims, attorneys, and authorized criminal justice officials can obtain inmate records.
Facilities Operated by the Nebraska Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation
The Nebraska Department of Correctional Services (NDCS) operates all state correctional institutions and facilities within its jurisdiction. This includes all state-operated prison facilities and excludes city and county jails and detention centers. County and city jails serve as holding facilities for each jurisdiction and are managed by local law enforcement agencies that disseminate inmate records of each facility.
At the state level, however, the NDCS establishes the operational guidelines of its facilities and maintains inmate records and related data. While some of these guidelines are adopted by locally managed facilities, the state department mainly disseminates records of incarcerated individuals in state-operated institutions with only a few exceptions. In total, the NDCS oversees the operations of 10 facilities, which house over 4,000 inmates.
Listed below are the addresses and contact information of all state-operated correctional institutions in the US state of Nebraska:
Community Corrections Center - Lincoln
2720 West Van Dorn Street
Lincoln, NE 68522
Phone: (402) 471-0740
Community Corrections Center - Omaha
2320 Avenue J
Omaha, NE 68110
Phone: (402) 595-2010
Reception and Treatment Center
3216 West Van Dorn Street
Lincoln, NE 68522
Phone: (402) 471-2861
Nebraska Correctional Center For Women
1107 Recharge Road
York, NE 68467-8003
Phone: (402) 362-3317
Nebraska Correctional Youth Facility
2610 North 20th Street East
Omaha, NE 68110
Phone: (402) 595-2000
Nebraska State Penitentiary
4201 South 14th Street
Lincoln, NE 68502
Phone: (402) 471-3161
Omaha Correctional Center
2323 Avenue J
Omaha, NE 68110-0099
Phone: (402) 595-3963
Tecumseh State Correctional Institution
2725 Highway 50
Tecumseh, NE 68450
Phone: (402) 335-5998
Work Ethic Camp
2309 North Highway 83
Mccook, NE 69001
Phone: (308) 345-8405