April 2, 2022 | Kentucky Law
The incarceration of a friend or loved one comes with many reasons for stress and concern. One of the most difficult aspects of a loved one’s incarceration is uncertainty. Once a person enters police custody, there’s minimal communication. You may not even know which facility or city in Kentucky they have been transported to.
Trying to locate an incarcerated individual by phone can be an impossible challenge. Amidst the stress and uncertainty of wanting to know where a family member or friend has been taken, the best option for finding an inmate in Kentucky is to use the Kentucky Offender Online Lookup, called KOOL for short.
What Is KOOL?
KOOL is an online database created and maintained by the Kentucky Department of Corrections. This database is the best way to locate an inmate in Kentucky. It offers information on all inmates serving time in the Kentucky State Penitentiary system.
The KOOL database won’t help you locate a person who is serving jail time or federal prison time; it only helps if you’re looking for a person who has been transferred to a Kentucky state prison.
The Kentucky State Penitentiary oversees 14 different adult facilities, so the database is necessary for keeping track of where to find an inmate.
How Do I Use KOOL?
KOOL uses a straightforward search function to help you locate an inmate. This means that anyone can use it with ease, regardless of how tech-savvy you may be.
To locate an individual using KOOL, first enter the website. Once there, you’ll see a search box that prompts you to enter a person’s first and last name. After you enter this and press search, you’ll be able to see search results.
If the inmate doesn’t appear, try again in a few days. It might take time for a new inmate’s information to appear online.
If the person you’re looking for has a common name, you may see multiple search results. In this case, you’ll need to review the inmate information to identify which is the one you’re looking for. If you have their unique prison identification number, you can use this for a faster way to identify the person you’re seeking.
What Information Does KOOL Share?
You can learn a lot about an inmate by using KOOL. Most importantly, the database will list which penitentiary they are located. Once you have this information, you can visit that facility’s web page. You’ll be able to find the facility policies and learn how much involvement you can have.
KOOL shares information about your loved one’s charges and how much time is being served for each charge. KOOL provides the historic percentage of time served for each type of conviction, giving you an idea of how long they’ll likely be incarcerated. For example, if an inmate has been charged with drug crimes or theft, KOOL will list how much of the full sentence is typically served.
Helping an Incarcerated Loved One
Friends and family may want to learn about a particular facility’s visiting hours and visitation policy. Before planning a visit, make sure to learn about the requirements. You can also learn the facility’s policy for phone calls and find out how to get in touch with your loved one over the phone.
In addition to visitation, you can find the facility’s address so that you can send letters. Some facilities may also allow you to send gifts, like books.
Finally, you may also want to add money to an inmate’s account so that they can buy hygiene products, snacks, or other personal items through the commissary. It’s best to check with an inmate via phone call to discuss their needs and what is available to them.