« Survey Finds that Most Law Librarians Prefer Westlaw to LexisNexis | Main | The Virtual Chase Comes to an End »

Free Criminal History Search for Individuals or Entire Neighborhoods

Criminal Searches is a new site that allows you to do just what its name implies - run a criminal history check on specific people or generally for a geographic area.

From an AP story:

Created by the folks behind PeopleFinders.com, the new site crunches monthly government data down to the state and county level, says Bryce Lane, president and chief operating officer of PeopleFinders.com.

"What we're really good at is establishing connections across all these different data sets, linking it back to a particular person," Lane said, acknowledging, however, that some data might be missing. The company also doesn't tap into federal crime data.

The Neighborhood Watch feature lets you focus your search by address or ZIP code. You can also search by a person's name or specific home address, and there's a separate search with a detailed map of registered sex offenders.

All I can say is WOW. I ran a general check of my street (I live in small town USA) and was completely shocked by the number of people listed - and all overlayed on a Google map of my neighborhood. Criminal Searches also includes an legend of the type of crime for which an individual was charged. See, for example, this map of the UW Madison campus area.
criminalsearches.png

Not surprisingly, some are questioning the product.

Yet, if a neighbor was not convicted and is otherwise innocent this may not matter to CriminalSearches.com. If you land on the list, prepare to save money on Halloween candy and rest assured you'll have a less cluttered social calender -- as word moves along about the free criminal background search website.

Source: MakeUseOf.com