How to Locate Inmates in Michigan

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In Michigan, all you need is a prisoner's name to find him in the state's prison system. The Offender Tracking Info System, or OTIS, is run by the Michigan Department of Corrections and provides public information on every state prisoner -- including the prisoner's name, location, offense, sentence term, photo and personal data. You can also search for prisoners on parole or escapees from the department's prison system. However, due to a 2008 amendment to the Michigan legislature, prisoner records are only available during the prisoner's sentence and for the first three years after his release.

Read the information regarding OTIS rules and regulations to affirm that you understand the search criteria, regulations and limitations of the database. Click "I Agree" to be taken to the OTIS search page.

Enter the prisoner's information into the search criteria fields, such as last name, first name, age or distinguishing marks, such as tattoos or scars. Select a database in the "offender status" drop-down menu, which is required to run the search. Click the "search" button to begin.

Select a prisoner's department of corrections number from the list of results to read a detailed report on the prisoner, including a photo, sentence length, offense and distinguishing features. Click on the prisoner's facility on the list of results for a direct link to the correction facility's website, which includes visiting hours, driving directions and prisoner contact info. To learn more about the prisoner's offense, click on the prisoner's Michigan Compiled Law link on the list of results page to bring up information on the prisoner's offense against Michigan law and sentencing information.


  • For more information on any prisoner in the department of corrections system or the OTIS directory, contact the department directly with an online form at

    Michigan Department of Corrections 206 E. Michigan Ave. Grandview Plaza PO Box 30003 Lansing, MI 48909 517-335-1426


  • To perform an OTIS search, you must fill out at least one of the search fields and select a type of database in the "offender status" drop-down menu.


About the Author

Leah Waldron is the head of Traveler Services at First Abroad, a gap year travel company based in Boston and London. As a travel, research and LGBT news writer, Waldron has publication credit on magazines and newspapers including "Curve Magazine," "USA Today," "The Sun Sentinel" and the "The Houston Chronicle." Waldron has a bachelor's and master's degree in creative writing from Florida State University.