Find Mississippi Criminal & Arrest Records for Free (Every MS County)

Free Mississippi Arrest Records & Criminal Records Search
Access Mississippi Records: background checks, warrants, probation and parole, court records, and all criminal and arrest records.

Find Mississippi criminal records in every county now, or learn how to check various county agencies and record custodians for free (in most cases) by using the guide below.

Thanks to the Freedom of Information Act, Mississippi arrest records and criminal history records are available to the public. However, finding the agency who manages these records and requesting them varies from county to county and can prove difficult.

Records Page helps make this process quick and easy, whether someone is scouring MS public records for personal purposes or needs to run a background check on someone for professional reasons such as employment, housing, licensing, etc.

By the end of this guide, readers will be empowered with the knowledge and resources necessary to check if someone is in jail, prison, has had run-ins with the law, is on probation, or even if they’re on the sex offender registry. Additionally, information on relevant laws, statutes, best practices, and more can be found within.

Are All Criminal and Arrest Records Considered Public Information in Mississippi (MS)?

Mississippi passed the Mississippi Public Records Act (Codes 25-61-1 through 25-61-17) in 1983 giving the public access to Mississippi criminal records regarding things such as current arrests, charges, warrants, disposition and sentencing in cases.

This means that anyone can access arrest records in Mississippi or other criminal history data as long as it isn’t expressly prohibited by the state code.

There are some exceptions outlined in the Public Records Act making some matters confidential, meaning they will not appear on a background check, including the following:

  • Records that are investigatory in nature when the case has not been tried in court,
  • Juvenile records, and
  • Information that discloses the identity of witnesses, victims or confidential informants.
  • Any records that disclose medical or mental health conditions of persons listed in the record (such as wellness call police reports).
  • Records that have been sealed by the courts or have been expunged pursuant to a court order.1

It’s also important to know what the person is getting when they receive a criminal history report, as well as the difference between criminal records and arrest records in Mississippi.

What Appears on Mississippi Criminal Records vs Arrest Records?

While criminal and arrest records share similar features, they are vastly different reports with different uses, and searchers need to understand what is on each and how they can be used to make the best decisions.

Mississippi arrest records show the person was taken into custody by a law enforcement agency. These may show up on reports of daily arrests at a law enforcement agency and are considered public record. An arrest record shows the date and time of the arrest, the charges filed against the person, a description of the subject, and where the person is being detained. It can also include a mugshot. Arrest records may also be limited to a small geographic area instead of statewide.2

Mississippi criminal records, on the other hand, contain all the information on the arrest record in addition to the disposition of those cases, as well as any other matters the person has been convicted of. A criminal history will typically not include traffic offenses unless they rise to misdemeanor or felony status. That is the biggest difference between arrest and criminal records, and criminal records are preferred when making decisions about employment, housing or licensing an individual.2

How To Check Arrest Records in Mississippi (See If Someone Is In Jail & Why)

When attempting to figure out who’s in jail, the best place to start is with local Mississippi sheriff’s offices.

The sheriff’s office is typically the agency that oversees all jail operations in a county, housing inmates from both city and county arrests.

When searching for someone in jail, it’s also important to have enough information to narrow down the search. Some things that someone needs to know before starting a jail inmate search include the person’s name, age or date of birth, estimated time and date of the arrest, and the law enforcement agency where the person was arrested.

With this information, the searcher is more likely to locate a person who is in custody.

Perform a County Arrest Record Search by Utilizing County Sherriff’s Inmate Rosters & Contact Information

As stated earlier, the best place to start a mugshot or inmate lookup in Mississippi is through the local sheriff’s office.

A screenshot from the official website of DeSoto County MS website showing the FAQs page and an arrow pointing to the Jail Docket link.
Source: DeSoto County, MS3

For convenience, we have developed a table that provides a link to every Mississippi sheriff’s office, along with a phone number, and a column that alerts readers if mugshots are available:

Mississippi County Inmate Search Tool Phone Number Shows Mugshots?
Adams County Sheriff’s Office 601-442-2752
Alcorn County Sheriff’s Office* 662-286-5521 X
Amite County Sheriff’s Office* 601-657-8057 X
Attala County Sheriff’s Office* 662-289-5556 X
Benton County Sheriff’s Office** 662-224-3062 X
Bolivar County Sheriff’s Office* 662-843-5378 X
Calhoun County Sheriff’s Office* 662-412-5000 X
Carroll County Sheriff’s Office* 662-237-9283 X
Chickasaw County Sheriff’s Office** 662-456-2339 X
Choctaw County Sheriff’s Office** 662-285-6129 X
Claiborne County Sheriff’s Office* 601-437-5161 X
Clark County Sheriff’s Office** 601-776-5252 X
Clay County Sheriff’s Office 662-494-2896
Coahoma County Sheriff’s Office* 662-624-3085 X
Copia County Sheriff’s Office* 601-894-2023 X
Covington County Sheriff’s Office* 601-765-8281 X
Desoto County Sheriff’s Office 662-469-8566
Forrest County Sheriff’s Office 601-545-6148
Franklin County Sheriff’s Office** 601-384-2323 X
George County Sheriff’s Office* 601-947-9156 X
Greene County Sheriff’s Office* 601-394-2341 X
Grenada County Sheriff’s Office* 662-226-6212 X
Hancock County Sheriff’s Office 228-466-6900
Harrison County Sheriff’s Office 228-896-3000
Hinds County Sheriff’s Office* 601-974-2945 X
Holmes County Sheriff’s Office* 662-834-1511 X
Humphreys County Sheriff’s Office** 662-247-2551 X
Issaquena County Sheriff’s Office** 662-873-2781 X
Itawamba County Sheriff’s Office** 662-862-3401 X
Jackson County Sheriff’s Office 228-769-3063
Jasper County Sheriff’s Office 601-764-2588
Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office* 601-786-2284 X
Jefferson Davis County Sheriff’s Office* 601-792-5169 X
Jones County Sheriff’s Office 601-425-3147
Kemper County Sheriff’s Office 601-743-2255
Lafayette County Sheriff’s Office* 662-234-6421 X
Lamar County Sheriff’s Office 601-794-1088 X
Lauderdale County Sheriff’s Office* 601-482-9806 X
Lawrence County Sheriff’s Office** 601-587-2961 X
Leake County Sheriff’s Office* 601-267-7361 X
Lee County Sheriff’s Office 662-680-5766 X
Leflore County Sheriff’s Office** 662-459-4157 X
Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office* 601-833-5231 X
Lowndes County Sheriff’s Office 662-328-6788
Madison County Sheriff’s Office 601-855-0739
Marion County Sheriff’s Office 601-736-5051
Marshall County Sheriff’s Office* 662-252-1311 X
Monroe County Sheriff’s Office* 662-369-2468 X
Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office* 662-283-3343 X
Neshoba County Sheriff’s Office* 601-656-1414 X
Newton County Sheriff’s Office* 601-635-2101 X
Noxubee County Sheriff’s Office** 662-726-5133 X
Oktibbeha County Sheriff’s Office 662-323-2421 X
Panola County Sheriff’s Office* 662-563-6230 X
Pearl River County Sheriff’s Office 601-403-2340
Perry County Sheriff’s Office 601-964-8461
Pike County Sheriff’s Office* 601-783-2323 X
Potomac County Sheriff’s Office** 662-489-3915 X
Prentiss County Sheriff’s Office* 662-728-2016 X
Quitman County Sheriff’s Office* 662-326-3131 X
Rankin County Sheriff’s Office* 601-825-1480 X
Scott County Sheriff’s Office 601-469-1511
Sharkey County Sheriff’s Office* 662-873-4321 X
Simpson County Sheriff’s Office* 601-847-2921 X
Smith County Sheriff’s Office* 601-782-4531 X
Stone County Sheriff’s Office* 601-928-3191 X
Sunflower County Sheriff’s Office 662-887-2121 X
Tallahatchie County Sheriff’s Office** 662-647-3700 X
Tate County Sheriff’s Office* 662-562-4434 X
Tippah County Sheriff’s Office* 662-837-9336 X
Tishomingo County Sheriff’s Office* 662-423-7000 X
Tunica County Sheriff’s Office 662-363-1411
Union County Sheriff’s Office** 662-534-1943 X
Walthall County Sheriff’s Office 601-876-3481
Warren County Sheriff’s Office* 601-636-1761 X
Washington County Sheriff’s Office* 662-334-4523 X
Wayne County Sheriff’s Office* 601-735-3801 X
Webster County Sheriff’s Office* 662-258-7701 X
Wilkinson County Sheriff’s Office* 601-888-3511 x
Winston County Sheriff’s Office* 662-773-5881 X
Yalobusha County Sheriff’s Office* 662-473-2722 X
Yazoo County Sheriff’s Office* 662-746-5611 X

*Sheriff’s Office does not have online inmate directory
**Sheriff’s Office does not have a functional website at this time

A screenshot from the Lamar County Sheriff's Office showing the page with inmate search button.
Source: Lamar County4
  1. Google “Mississippi [county name] jail roster.”
  2. Check the top search results for the official county sheriff’s office website and click that link. As an example, if someone wanted to find out if a person is in jail in DeSoto County they would type “Mississippi DeSoto jail roster” to reach The DeSoto County Sheriff’s Office detention center.
  3. Look for a heading labeled arrest report or inmate roster and click that link. In the example above it would be the jail docket link which directs the searcher to the vendor that handles the DeSoto County jail roster.
  4. Enter the person’s name to start the search.
  5. For common names, multiple records may appear, so it will be necessary to make sure the record matches the search subject.
  6. If there is not an online directory of jail inmates, call the non-emergency number located on the sheriff’s department website.

City police departments have their own jails or holding facilities, and those that partner with the sheriff’s office for housing arrestees can provide information on where someone was transported. Using the same steps for searching a county sheriff’s office, replace the first steps with Googling “search for [name of city] Mississippi recent arrests.”

They can then see if there is a link for a city jail, or call the non-emergency number to find out where an arrestee was transported for holding.

For example, the capital of Mississippi, Jackson, has its own municipal police department; however, people arrested within the city limits are transported to the Hinds County Sheriff’s Office to be detained awaiting trial. Someone can call the non-emergency number for the Jackson Police Department, 601-960-1217, to make sure an arrestee was taken to jail or released by the department.5

Another well-known city, Biloxi, Mississippi, has a non-emergency number 228-392-0641 that searchers can call to ask if a person is being housed at the Harrison County Jail or somewhere else.6, 7

When a person is arrested by city police, the county jail maintained by the local sheriff is the best option for finding an inmate and what they were arrested for.

Ways to Contact Inmates In Mississippi Jails & Post Their Bail

The primary motivation for locating someone in a Mississippi jail is to maintain contact with the person and help get them released on bail, also called posting bond. Using the table above, individuals can research the visitation and contact procedures for the jail where the person is being held, including how to find out next court dates for inmates and bonding procedures.

Many jails in Mississippi use a correctional telephone service such as Securus Technologies8 for voice interaction, and HomeWAV9 for video visitation. Links to set up video or voice contact are provided on some sheriff’s office websites. It is best to check with the jail before purchasing a product to find out that agency’s communications partner.

The sheriff’s office website may also contain a list of licensed bail bondsmen in that area to help with inmate pretrial release. The Mississippi Department of Insurance also maintains a list of bail bondsmen who have had their licenses revoked, so before reaching out to one regarding posting a loved one’s bond. This will ensure that the person making the arrangements is legally authorized to do so and will not delay the inmate’s release.10

Using the table above and the search steps outlined for locating an inmate, a person can also learn how to make contact with an arrestee, how to post bail, procedures for sending mail, and what items an inmate can have while incarcerated at the county lockup.

Some sheriff’s departments also provide a downloadable inmate handbook for families to know what items are permitted in the jail, how to post bail and the visitation schedule. The handbook may also include data about court procedures and how to see an inmate at their court hearing.

An arrest or charge starts the ball rolling for building a full criminal history, but it is only a piece of the puzzle when it comes to someone’s background. A criminal history report is a more comprehensive look into a person’s background.

How To Search Mississippi Criminal History Records

After a person is arrested in Mississippi, a hearing before a judge will follow at some point in most cases. The court system plays a key role in building an overall criminal history. The Mississippi court is what establishes a disposition in a case including acquittal, dismissals, and convictions.

Below is information on how to access court records to find the information needed.

Check Criminal Records Through Mississippi Clerk of Courts in Each County

Each county has a clerk of court that is responsible for maintaining all the civil and criminal court cases filed within that county. They maintain the records for accuracy and many court records are considered public records.

A statewide search is also possible through the Mississippi Judiciary when someone wants to see if a person has been tried for a case in another county or has multiple offenses across the state. This is a free search but is not considered an official background report.

To search criminal records through the Mississippi court system, do the following:

  1. Open the State of Mississippi Judiciary page.
  2. At the top of the page is a search bar labeled general docket. Type the subject’s name into this and click the magnifying glass to start the search.
  3. Review the list of cases that appear and find cases with the subject vs the State of Mississippi. Criminal cases will always be the state against the defendant, not the victim vs the defendant, because the state is charged with maintaining law and order in its borders.
  4. Click on the specific case that you want to review and then look for case documents that have been uploaded to get more details.

This search can show information on any county court in the state; however, sometimes individuals just need a local criminal record check, and this can be completed at the county courthouse. Each county has a clerk of court that maintains the records for every case within that county (both civil and criminal).

A screenshot from the State of Mississippi Judiciary website showing a page with General Docket section with case search bar.
Source: State of Mississippi Judiciary11

The clerk’s office maintains public terminals that anyone can use to look up cases at that courthouse.

The table below lists the address and contact number for each clerk of court in Mississippi:

County County Courthouse Address Phone Number
Adams County Clerk of Court 115 S Wall Street
Natchez, Mississippi 39121-1224
Alcorn County Clerk of Court POB 430
Corinth, Mississippi 38835
Amite County Clerk of Court POB 312
Liberty, Mississippi 39645
Attala County Clerk of Court 100 Courthouse, Suite 1
Kosciusko, Mississippi 39090
Benton County Clerk of Court POB 626
Ashland, Mississippi 38603
Bolivar County Clerk of Court POB 670
Cleveland, Mississippi 38732
Calhoun County Clerk of Court POB 25
Pittsboro, Mississippi 38951
Carroll County Clerk of Court POB 60
Carrollton, Mississippi 38917
Chickasaw County Clerk of Court 1 Pinson Sq, Rm 2
Houston, Mississippi 38851
Choctaw County Clerk of Court POB 34
Ackerman, Mississippi 39735
Claiborne County Clerk of Court POB 549
Port Gibson, Mississippi 39150
Clarke County Clerk of Court POB 216
Quitman, Mississippi 39355
Clay County Clerk of Court POB 364
West Point, Mississippi 39773
Coahoma County Clerk of Court POB 849
Clarksdale, Mississippi 38614
Copia County Clerk of Court POB 467
Hazlehurst, Mississippi 39083
Covington County Clerk of Court POB 667
Collins, Mississippi 39428
Desoto County Clerk of Court 2535 Highway 51 South, Room 201
Hernando, Mississippi 38632
Forrest County Clerk of Court POB 992
Hattiesburg, Mississippi 39403
Franklin County Clerk of Court POB 267
Meadville, Mississippi 39653
George County Clerk of Court 355 Cox Street, Suite C
Lucedale, Mississippi  39452
Greene County Clerk of Court POB 310
Leakesville, Mississippi 39451
Grenada County Clerk of Court POB 1517
Grenada, Mississippi 38902-1517
Hancock County Clerk of Court 152 Main St, Ste B
Bay St. Louis, Mississippi 39520
Harrison County Clerk of Court POB 998
Gulfport, Mississippi 39502
Hinds County Clerk of Court POB 327
Jackson, Mississippi 39205
Holmes County Clerk of Court POB 718
Lexington, Mississippi 39095
Humphreys County Clerk of Court POB 696
Belzoni, Mississippi 39038
Issaquena County Clerk of Court POB 27
Mayersville, Mississippi 39113
Itawamba County Clerk of Court 201 W Main St
Fulton, Mississippi 38843
Jackson County Clerk of Court POB 998
Pascagoula, Mississippi 39568
Jasper County Clerk of Court POB 58
Paulding, Mississippi 39348
Jefferson County Clerk of Court POB 305
Fayette, Mississippi 39069
Jefferson Davis County Clerk of Court POB 1090
Prentiss, Mississippi 39474
Jones County Clerk of Court 101 Court St, Ste B
Ellisville, Mississippi 39437
Kemper County Clerk of Court POB 130
DeKalb, Mississippi 39328
Lafayette County Clerk of Court 1 Courthouse Sq, Suite 101
Oxford, Mississippi 38655
Lamar County Clerk of Court POB 369
Purvis, Mississippi 39475
Lauderdale County Clerk of Court POB 1005
Meridian, Mississippi 39302-1005
Lawrence County Clerk of Court POB 1249
Monticello, Mississippi 39654
Leake County Clerk of Court POB 67
Carthage, Mississippi 39051
Lee County Clerk of Court POB 762
Tupelo, Mississippi 38802
Leflore County Clerk of Court POB 1953
Greenwood, Mississippi 38935
Lincoln County Clerk of Court 301 South 1st Street, Rm 205
Brookhaven, Mississippi 39601
Lowndes County Clerk of Court POB 31
Columbus, Mississippi 39703
Madison County Clerk of Court POB 1626
Canton, Mississippi 39046
Marion County Clerk of Court 250 Broad St, Ste 1
Columbia, Mississippi 39429
Marshall County Clerk of Court POB 459
Holly Springs, Mississippi 38635
Monroe County Clerk of Court POB 843
Aberdeen, Mississippi 39730
Montgomery County Clerk of Court POB 765
Winona, Mississippi 38967
Neshoba County Clerk of Court 401 East Beacon Street, Suite 1
Philadelphia, Mississippi 39350
Newton County Clerk of Court POB 447
Decatur, Mississippi 39327
Noxubee County Clerk of Court 505 S Jefferson
Macon, Mississippi 39341
Oktibbeha County Clerk of Court 108 West Main St
Starkville, Mississippi 39759
Panola County Clerk of Court 215 Pocahontas St
Sardis, Mississippi 38666
Pearl River County Clerk of Court 200 S Main St
Poplarville, Mississippi 39470
Perry County Clerk of Court POB 198
New Augusta, Mississippi 39642
Pike County Clerk of Court POB 31
Magnolia, Mississippi 39652
Potomac County Clerk of Court POB 428
Potomac, Mississippi 38863
Prentiss County Clerk of Court POB 727
Booneville, Mississippi 38829
Quitman County Clerk of Court 220 Chestnut Street, Suite 4
Marks, Mississippi 38646
Rankin County Clerk of Court POB 1599
Brandon, Mississippi 39043
Scott County Clerk of Court POB 371
Forest, Mississippi 39074
Sharkey County Clerk of Court POB 218
Rolling Fork, Mississippi 39159
Simpson County Clerk of Court POB 307
Mendenhall, Mississippi 39114
Smith County Clerk of Court POB 517
Raleigh, Mississippi 39153
Stone County Clerk of Court 323 Cavers Ave
Wiggins, Mississippi 39577
Sunflower County Clerk of Court POB 880
Indianola, Mississippi 38751
Tallahatchie County Clerk of Court POB 86
Charleston, Mississippi 38921
Tate County Clerk of Court 201 Ward St
Senatobia, Mississippi 38868
Tippah County Clerk of Court 102A N Main
Ripley, Mississippi 38663
Tishomingo County Clerk of Court 1008 Battleground
Iuka, Mississippi 38852
Tunica County Clerk of Court POB 184
Tunica, Mississippi 38676
Union County Clerk of Court POB 289
New Albany, Mississippi 38652
Walthall County Clerk of Court 200 Ball Ave
Tyler, Mississippi 39667
Warren County Clerk of Court POB 351
Vicksburg, Mississippi 39181
Washington County Clerk of Court POB 1276
Greenville, Mississippi 38702
Wayne County Clerk of Court 609 Azalea
Waynesboro, Mississippi 39367
Webster County Clerk of Court POB 308
Walthall, Mississippi 39771
Wilkinson County Clerk of Court POB 327
Woodville, Mississippi 39669
Winston County Clerk of Court POB 785
Louisville, Mississippi 39339
Yalobusha County Clerk of Court POB 260
Coffeeville, Mississippi 38922
Yazoo County Clerk of Court POB 108
Yazoo City, Mississippi 39194

Run a Criminal Record Search in Mississippi Through the Mississippi Department of Public Safety (MDPS)

For employment or housing purposes, a person will need an official statewide (or national) criminal background check, and they will need to know how to complete a statewide search for Mississippi criminal records. The official public records repository for the state of Mississippi is the Mississippi Department of Public Safety, through its Criminal Information Center (CIC). The applicant processing division provides agencies with a name-based background check including statewide records.

The automated fingerprint identification system (AFIS) through the Mississippi Department of Public Safety provides a more detailed, comprehensive background check by linking to the FBI providing a rap sheet showing nationwide criminal history.7

How To Get Copies of Your Own Criminal History Report in Mississippi

It is through the Mississippi Department of Public safety where one would request a statewide criminal history report. To obtain a copy of a background screening, do the following steps:

Screenshot of the Mississippi Department of Public Safety website, displaying various clickable links related to driver services and firearm permit division, the webpage provides information on driver service bureau appointments, driver's license renewals, and obtaining duplicate driver's licenses.
Source: Mississippi Department of Public Safety12
  1. Open the Mississippi Department of Public Safety page.
  2. Click the box labeled background check.
  3. Read the disclaimer then click the continue button.
  4. Fill in the name-based background check form that appears on the screen and click the continue button again. If the person does not have a criminal history in Mississippi, a message will appear stating no matches could be found.
  5. If a match is found, complete the payment information as well as where the record can be sent.

If a person needs a fingerprint based check, they must have their prints taken at a LiveScan location in the state. LiveScan allows the person to have their prints and information submitted electronically, and the prints are then matched through AFIS to see if there is a match.13

Screenshot of the Mississippi Department of Public Safety Background Check website, displaying a form for individuals to fill out in order to request a background check, the form includes fields for personal information such as Social Security number, race, sex, birth date, and full name.
Source: MS.GOV14

A complete background check includes data from arrest to sentencing, including things such as incarceration, probation and parole status.

How Do You Determine If Someone Is on Probation or Parole in Mississippi?

If someone is just curious about who is on probation or parole in their neighborhood, or if a victim wants to know the status of the person who committed a crime against them, they need to know where to find probation or parole information.

To illustrate just how many people are on probation and parole, the following image shows the combined total of probationers and parolees in Mississippi, along with their ethnicities. Furthermore, these totals are also compared to the number of individuals on community supervision (including probation and parole) in other states across the United States.

A map of the United States with the total number of adults on probation and parole in each state is shown, with Mississippi being highlighted with a total of 1788 people; a bar graph showing the ethnic breakdown of the state's probationers and parolees is also displayed, with the website's logo in the bottom left corner.
Source: Bureau of Justice Statistics

Probation is sometimes used as an alternative to prison, but it can also be used as a diversionary process to help an offender perform community service or make restitution in exchange for a dismissal at a later date and individuals on community supervision in the state fall under the Department of Corrections.. To complete a probation search for Mississippi, do the following:

  1. Open the Mississippi Department of Corrections (MDOC) website.
  2. Click the inmate search button.
  3. Enter the subject’s name and click the search button. If the person has a common name, a number of hits may come up on the screen.
  4. For probationers, the search results will show the subject’s location listed as other location or house arrest.
A screenshot from the Mississippi Department of Corrections Inmate search page.
Source: Mississippi Department of Corrections15

MDOC also maintains a parolee database that can be searched online. To search for someone on parole in Mississippi, do the following steps:

  1. Open the Mississippi Department of Corrections (MDOC) website.
  2. Click the button labeled parolee search.
  3. Enter the subject’s name and click the search button.
  4. A list of records matching that person will populate. For location, it will list the name of the county followed by the letters CC to show community corrections or community supervision. If the person is in violation of parole, the record will show they have absconded supervision.16
Screenshot of the Mississippi Parolee Search webpage, displaying a search criteria form for individuals to input the last name and first name of a parolee they wish to search for.
Source: MS.GOV17

Probation and parole, along with other criminal convictions will show up on a person’s record unless they are able to get the matter expunged or sealed.

Steps To Seal or Expunge a Criminal Record in Mississippi (Clearing Your Record)

A criminal record can have a very negative impact on a person’s ability to find housing, get a job or obtain a professional license, and getting the record cleared can be a huge step in the right direction, but how does someone expunge or seal a case in Mississippi? The table below outlines the criteria for expungement for felonies and misdemeanors, along with the steps to expunge the matter.

Offense Classification Eligibility Requirements Steps To Expunge Record
  • Charge was dismissed or the defendant was acquitted.
  • Matter was not a traffic offense.
  • Was the person’s first and only offense.
  • If not the first and only, two years have passed since the end of sentencing or dismissal of the case.
  • All fines and fees have been paid in full.
  1. Obtain the necessary court documents including dismissal, indictment, sentencing or discharge official court record.
  2. Complete and submit a petition to the court where the case was docketed or placed on the trial calendar.
  3. Submit a copy via mail of the petition and a prepared order to the district attorney in the county where the case originated.
  4. Pay any fees at the time of filing.
  5. The court will review the matter and if there is no object, the expungement can be entered without a hearing. If there is an objection, a hearing will be scheduled.
  • Charge resulted in non-conviction
  • Conviction was more than 5 years ago
  • Currently have no other convictions or pending charges.
  • Charges were not for a violent crime, arson, trafficking controlled substances, 3rd or 4th or more DUI, felony possession of firearm, failure to register as sex offender, voyeurism, witness intimidation, abuse of vulnerable population or embezzlement.
  1. Obtain the necessary court documents including dismissal, indictment, sentencing or discharge official court record.
  2. Complete and submit a petition to the court where the case was docketed or placed on the trial calendar.
  3. Submit a copy via mail of the petition and a prepared order to the district attorney in the county where the case originated.
  4. Pay any fees at the time of filing.
  5. The court will review the matter and if there is no object, the expungement can be entered without a hearing. If there is an objection, a hearing will be scheduled.

Expungements can be very complicated, and an attorney may be able to help take the guesswork out of the process. Individuals who cannot afford an attorney may be able to get assistance through the Mississippi Center for Justice, a non-profit law firm that handles expungements of low-income individuals.18

Mississippi Code 99-19-71(2) (a) made it easier for convicted felons to have a second chance by allowing more leeway in expunging felony cases, and now allows for up to 3 felonies to be expunged from a person’s record.19

Ways To Locate Federal & State Prisoners in Mississippi

Another thing people like to know is who in their area is in prison, or if someone they know has served time in a Mississippi state prison. The Mississippi Department of Corrections (MDOC) is responsible for the housing and rehabilitation of offenders who have been ordered to an active prison sentence following conviction for an offense or series of offenses.

Searching MDOC records can reveal someone’s criminal record, but only if that person has been sentenced to prison or probation in the state.

Screenshot of the Mississippi Department of Corrections (DOC) Inmate Search webpage, displaying a search criteria form for individuals to input the first and last name of an inmate they wish to search for.
Source: Mississippi Department of Corrections20

The steps to search for a MDOC inmate are the same as that for doing a Mississippi probation search listed above. When conducting a search, instead of listing location as other or house arrest, the record lists where the person is incarcerated.

MDOC also maintains a mugshot database of prisoners, so searchers can make sure the record pulled up matches the subject of the search.

There are also four different federal facilities in Yazoo City, Mississippi to house those sentenced to prison on the federal level. To search for a federal inmate, do the following:

  1. Open the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) website.
  2. Enter the subject’s first and last name and click the search button. Searchers can also add the person’s race, sex and age if available.
  3. Check the search results to see if the subject has been in federal prison at some point, or is currently in a federal facility. If the person is currently incarcerated, the search results will indicate where they are being held.
A screenshot from the Federal Bureau of prisons find an inmate page.
Source: Federal Bureau of Prisons21

Prison inmate searches show those individuals that have already been through the court process and were found guilty at their hearings, but sometimes people want to know who is wanted by police in their area rather than who has already been sentenced.

How To Check for Arrest Warrants in MS

The quickest way is to conduct a warrant search to see if a person is wanted by the police. Courts issue warrants most warrants pretrial, but a warrant can also be issued after a trial has started if the person fails to appear.

The best place to start the search is with the local sheriff’s office or police department. Using the sheriff’s office table earlier in the article, individuals can go to the agency website and look for a warrant list, sometimes called the county’s most wanted list.

For example, if someone wanted to know if they have a warrant out for their arrest in Tunica County, they could do the following search:

  1. Google “Mississippi Tunica County warrants.”
  2. Find the official state website in the search results and click the link for the Tunica County Sheriff’s Office.22
  3. Select the tab labeled most wanted to see who currently has warrants out for their arrest in that county.23

The same steps can be used for municipal police departments. Warrants are the first step in generating arrest records in Mississippi, and it’s important to know if someone is wanted by the police so they can work to turn themselves in safely, or so someone can report the location of a wanted person if they know their whereabouts.

Mississippi Background Checks: When Screenings Are Required and Who Does Them

Whether it’s for employment, adoption, working with children, the elderly, or medical licensing, getting a background check done in MS is a straight forward process.

In general, the Mississippi Department of Public Safety performs all background checks for:

  • Employment screenings
  • Personal background checks
  • Licensure screenings
  • Name-based and fingerprint based checks

Individuals can request their own background checks through the MDPS Criminal History page for $50 dollars before the fingerprinting fee. Typically, it’s as easy as getting the fingerprints done at a LiveScan location, filling out the appropriate forms, obtaining a fingerprint card, and mailing it to:

The Mississippi State Department of Health (Criminal History Fingerprint Unit)
143B LeFleur’s Sq
Jackson Mississippi, 39211

The documents may also be emailed to [email protected].

Because these types of screenings are being used for official purposes, the agency or company employed to conduct the screening must comply with Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) requirements regarding credit history, non-convictions and use of criminal records in addition to state laws.

These regulations do not apply to personal background checks, which cannot be used for official decision making in licensure, employment or housing, and the searcher is also advised the report cannot be used for stalking or harassing the subject.

Agencies that require a background check are typically focusing on violent offenses that could appear on a felony registry that are automatic disqualifiers for a candidate. Mississippi criminal records can be a huge roadblock in obtaining a professional license, especially if the conviction is for something violent like a sex offense.

A Look at the Mississippi Sex Offender Registry

When someone is buying a new home, one of the selling points may be there are no registered sex offenders living close to the residence. Also, some people are curious about how many registered sex offenders live in their neighborhood.

Mississippi maintains a statewide sex offender registry to allow the public to know who has been convicted of a sex crime and is living in their county. Sex offenders are required to notify the sheriff’s office in their area when they move to that location.

To search the Mississippi sex offender registry, do the following:

  1. Open the Public Sex Offender Registry website maintained by the Mississippi Department of Public Safety.
  2. Click the name search tab at the top of the screen and read the disclaimer.
  3. Click the button labeled I agree to proceed to the next step.
  4. Complete the code to verify the searcher is not a robot.
  5. Enter the subject’s last and first name and click the search button.

A list of registered users matching the subject’s name will appear on the screen. The public registry in Mississippi includes a mugshot of the offender to help match the search results with the subject of the search. Clicking on the person’s name will reveal more details about the offender and the offense including full name, aliases, physical description, gender, race, age and date of birth, conviction date, offense, and location of the offender including the type of vehicle the person drives.24

Screenshot of the Mississippi Sex Offender Registry webpage, displaying a search form for individuals to input the last name and first name of a registered sex offender they wish to search for.
Source: Public Sex Offender Registry25

Searchers can also do a screening based on an address or a county wide search to see how many registered offenders live in that county by clicking the geographical search button instead of name search.26

There is also a national sex offender registry, the Dru Sjodin National Sex Offender Registry, which links with all the state registries giving a central starting point if a person doesn’t know where an offender lives when doing a search.

A screenshot from the National sex offender public website showing a search criterion boxes.
Source: United States Department of Justice National Sex Offender Public Website27

As with all official state records, publication of Mississippi sex offender registry information must comply with state and federal laws regarding background checks, public records and disclosure of information.

Mississippi Laws Governing Criminal Records & Arrest Records

Currently Mississippi does not have a ban-the-box statute prohibiting employers from asking about a person’s criminal record on an application meaning that applicants must rely on federal statutes for the majority of protections when it comes to background checks. This means employers can consider criminal records at any stage of the hiring process.

The state’s expungement statute, 99-19-71(2) (a), has helped level the playing field for those convicted of eligible felonies or misdemeanors in the state by allowing offenders to petition the courts for relief. If expungement is granted, these items can no longer appear on a background check in the state.21

Federal statutes that provide protections to applicants include anti-discrimination laws such as Title VII of the Civil Rights Act which protects applicants from discrimination based on sex, gender, age, race or other protected classes. This is enforced by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission which also provides employers with guidance on using criminal or arrest records in Mississippi in making hiring decisions.

The Fair Credit Reporting Act prohibits background checks from showing non-convictions that are more than 7 years old on a Mississippi criminal record check, and it also limits the lookback period to 7 years for credit reports (10 for bankruptcies). FCRA guidance also requires a written notice if negative action is taken against a person based on the background check.

Searching arrest records in Mississippi is easy using this free guide to understand the steps to take at each agency that creates and stores criminal records. It also provides the information needed to make an informed decision when reviewing Mississippi criminal records as part of the employment or housing screening process.


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2Difference Between an Arrest, Charge, and Conviction. (n.d.). Conyers & Nix. Retrieved March 12, 2023, from <>

3“FAQs.” DeSoto County, MS. Accessed 29 April 2023. <>

4“Sheriff’s Office.” Lamar County. Accessed 29 April 2023. <>

5Jackson Police Department – Jackson, MS. (n.d.). City of Jackson. Retrieved March 12, 2023, from <>

6Police Department. (n.d.). City of Biloxi. Retrieved March 12, 2023, from <>

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13Frequently Asked Questions | Mississippi Department of Public Safety. (n.d.). | Mississippi Department of Public Safety. Retrieved March 12, 2023, from <>

14“DPS – Name-Based Background Check.” | MS.GOV. Accessed 29 April 2023. <>

15“Probation.” Mississippi Department of Corrections. Accessed 29 April 2023. <>

16Parolee Search – Mississippi Department of Corrections. (n.d.). | MS.GOV. Retrieved March 12, 2023, from <>

17“Parolee Search – Mississippi Department of Corrections.” | MS.GOV. Accessed 29 April 2023. <>

18About the Center. (n.d.). Mississippi Center for Justice. Retrieved March 12, 2023, from <>

19HB 122 (As Passed the House) – 2021 Regular Session. (n.d.). MISSISSIPPI LEGISLATURE. Retrieved March 12, 2023, from <>

20“Mississippi Department of Corrections.” Mississippi Department of Corrections. Accessed 29 April 2023. <>

21Federal Bureau of Prisons. Accessed 20 May 2023. <>

22TCSO. (n.d.). Tunica County Sheriff’s Office. Retrieved March 12, 2023, from <>

23Most Wanted – Sorting by Posting Date – Descending – Page 1. (n.d.). Tunica County Sheriff’s Office. Retrieved March 12, 2023, from <>

24Public Sex Offender Registry. Accessed 29 April 2023. <>

25Sex Offender Registry. (n.d.). MS DPS. Retrieved March 12, 2023, from <>

26Public Sex Offender Registry. Accessed 29 April 2023. <>

27United States Department of Justice National Sex Offender Public Website. Accessed 20 May 2023. <>