Criminal Records

  1. Home
  2. Glossary
  3. Criminal Records

U.S. criminal records or “rap sheets” consist of an individual’s documented arrests, criminal charges, and the final results of those charges. Criminal records are digitally filed and maintained by law enforcement agencies at the local, state, and federal levels. 

These records provide a complete account of a person’s criminal history, including their:

  • Arrests
  • Arrest warrants
  • Convictions
  • Felonies
  • Inmate records
  • Juvenile criminal records
  • Parole information
  • Probation records
  • Misdemeanors
  • Sex offender listings
  • Serious traffic violations

Criminal records may be used by law enforcement during a criminal investigation or by other businesses or agencies when conducting a background check to determine an individual’s eligibility for employment, security clearance, adoption, or immigration. 

You are entitled to access your own federal criminal record, officially known as an Identity History Summary. To apply, you must submit a completed application form, an original copy of your fingerprints, and payment for the $18 processing fee to:

FBI CJIS Division – Summary Request
1000 Custer Hollow Road
Clarksburg, West Virginia 26306

Navigate Glossary Terms

Previous Term
Divorce Certificate
Next Term
Consular Report of Birth Abroad (CRBA)