Inmate Release Notification System

  • Inmate Release Notification System

    Inmate Release Notification System

How to Use the Inmate Release Notification System

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Crime victims live each day with the fear that the offender who victimized them will return. The New York State Inmate Release Notification System gives victims and their families the ability to anonymously track when that offender is incarcerated in a correctional facility and when he or she is released.

With just one toll-free phone call or online search, a person can obtain timely and accurate information about the custody status of any inmate housed in New York's county jails or other county correctional facilities.

By registering with the Inmate Release Notification System, a person is automatically notified of any change in the status of an abuser, including transfer, escape, or release, so that they can take steps to protect themselves.

The New York State Sheriffs' Institute Inmate Release Notification System is powered by VINE (VINELink.com), which is America’s number one victim notification network. VINE technology is supported in 48 states nationwide and provides offender custody status information to over 20 million U.S. civilians annually.

The system provides notification information by phone, email, text message, and TTY (hearing impaired). It is free to sign up and accessible 24 hours a day, seven days a week so that victims and concerned citizens can have access to reliable information and a sense of security they deserve.

I Am Not Alone

See how the power of VINE can work for you!

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Now I Know

Look Up Offenders

Go to VINElink.com or make a toll-free call to 1-888-VINE-4-NY to immediately learn the custody status of any offender housed in any of New York’s County Jails or Correctional Facilities.

Look Up an Offender

Register to be Notified

Register online to be notified via phone, text or email when the offender’sstatus changes. The offender will never know you are registered.

Get the Message

"The time immediately following when an order of protection is served can be the most dangerous for a victim of domestic violence. But, when armed with the technology that the Order of Protection Notification Service system provides, victims of domestic violence can receive timely notifications and take appropriate steps to protect themselves and their loved ones from further harm. I encourage victims to sign up for this service as soon as possible."

"I feel safe because I was alerted to changes involving my offender. Had it not been for VINE, the results could have been terrible."

Belinda Harris-Ritter

Offender murdered her parents

"I wish I could articulate to you how afraid I was of John. I know that should he get out of prison, he will find me and kill me. I have no doubt in my mind. However, I feel I can put my safety in the hands of VINE and you won't let me down. Thank you for the secure feeling I've not had for six years. And that feeling is priceless."

Mildred Muhammad

Former wife of "DC Sniper" John Muhammad

"VINE is the greatest innovation we have to fight domestic violence crime created in the last three decades. It saves lives."

Marcia Roth

Executive Director, Mary Byron Project

"My offender has been arrested in different jurisdictions. It was really hard to keep up until I found out about VINE and I did a search on your website. It's such a relief to know where he is. My case has been going around the court system for 18 months. It can give you a feeling of hopelessness and that no one cares. Your system changes that for me."

Lori

Stalking and domestic victim

How to Access the Inmate Release Notification System

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Online

VINELink.com is the online portal for the Inmate Release Notification System. It can be accessed 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to provide the most reliable information for custody status changes. Go to www.vinelink.com, click on New York State and search for the offender by name or offender ID.

Visit Vinelink

Mobile Devices

VINELink™ Mobile App is the on-the-go version of the Inmate Release Notification System. It lets you access vital information right from your mobile device. The VINELink Mobile App is available for iOS and Android devices and is completely free for users. 

Download Vinemobile

Toll-free Number

Call  toll free from a touch-tone phone to find out if an offender is still in custody or back on the street. Phone support is available for callers who need help locating an offender, registering for notifications, or accessing victim services in their area. Over 200 languages are available via live operator support. 

Call 1-866-277-7477

Mary's Story and the History of VINE

Mary was raped, assaulted, and stalked by her former boyfriend in late 1993. He was arrested and jailed for these crimes, but someone posted his bail and he was released. There was no way for Mary to know.

On the evening of December 6, 1993, Mary sat in her car as it warmed up after leaving her job. Her former boyfriend approached from the driver’s side and fired seven bullets into her head and chest at point blank range, killing her. It was Mary’s 21st birthday.

The community was stunned and outraged. County officials and engineers worked diligently to design a system that would let crime victims know whether their offenders are in jail, where they are held, and when they are released.

Under statewide freedom of information statutes, court and jail records are part of the public domain, meaning that victims and their families have the right to know the status of an offender. Unfortunately, the complex and separate systems of the courts, law enforcement, and jails made it difficult to obtain this information.

Exactly one year after Mary’s murder, Jefferson County, Kentucky became the first community to institute automated telephone notification for crime victims and other concerned citizens. That system is VINE® — The National Victim Notification Network — now used in thousands of communities across the nation.

Mary's Story - Why We Have VINE

Mary Byron's parents had asked to be notified when their daughter's abuser was released from custody so that they could move her to safety. Tragically, their request was never relayed to the appropriate authorities. After VINE was introduced, Mary’s father, John Byron, said “If only they’d had this a year ago, Mary would be alive.”

Mary's parents made it their mission to find a way to help other victims so that no more families would suffer such a tragic loss.

NYS Sheriffs' Institute Crime Victim Services

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the VINE technology that powers the New York State Sheriffs' Institute Inmate Release Notification System?

VINE (Victim Information and Notification Everyday) is a service through which victims of crime can use the telephone or Internet to search for information regarding their offender's custody status and register to receive telephone and e-mail notification when their offender's custody status changes. 

 

How do I register for the New York State Inmate Release Notification System?

VINELink
VINELink.com is the online portal for the Inmate Release Notification System. It can be accessed 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to provide the most reliable information for custody status changes. Go to www.vinelink.com, click on New York State and search for the offender by name or offender ID.

The VINELink Mobile App
The VINELink™ Mobile App is the on-the-go version of the Inmate Release Notification System that lets you access vital information right from your mobile device. The VINELink Mobile App is available for iOS and Android devices and is completely free for users.

Toll-Free Number: 1-888-VINE-4-NY (1-888-846-3469)
Call 1-888-VINE-4-NY (1-888-846-3469) toll free from a touch-tone phone to find out if the offender is still in custody or back on the street. Toll-free phone support is available 24/7/365 for callers who need help locating an offender, registering for notifications, or accessing victim services in their area. Over 200 languages are available via live operator support.

 

Why do the Sheriffs support crime victim services like VINE?

New York State Sheriffs are committed to helping and serving crime victims by providing resources, information and protection that limits any further victimization or trauma. The Sheriffs have been supporting the VINE system for nearly 20 years. Public safety is our primary purpose and our goal is to have crime victims feel as whole as possible.  For more on our commitment to crime victims, visit Our History.

 

Where is the VINE system available and can I keep track of an inmate out of New York State?

The VINE system is available in 48 states and made possible in New York by the New York State Sheriffs' Institute. If the inmate for whom you're searching is in custody at a corrections facility that participates in VINE, you should be able to locate custody information on VINELink www.vinelink.com.

 

Why can't I find a particular offender?

VINELink provides information regarding offenders who are currently in custody or who may have been recently released from custody. If you do not find the person for whom you search, please call the facility where you believe the offender to be housed and inquire about the status of his/her custody.

 

What does "non-participating county" mean?

VINE is available in 48 states through various different types of agreements. Even in states with VINE programs, not each and every county participates. Some counties do not have jail facilities and therefore do not report any information. In other states, individual counties support their own contract for VINE. If you do not see your county listed, then it is currently a non-participating county. Please contact your local jail for offender information.

 

How do I locate information about a Federal inmate?

VINE does not receive information regarding federal inmates. However, the Bureau of Prison website, www.bop.gov, has an "Locator" that provides information on any Federal Inmate.

 

How frequently do you receive offender information?

Our standard transaction time is every 15 minutes for jails and twice each day for prisons. This may vary depending upon the jail activity and the resources the facility has on site to update the data. Most always, the data is current within 15 minutes. However, if you have reason to believe the data is out of date, you should call the jail directly for an update and invoke your personal safety plan. Do not depend solely on VINE or any other program for your safety.

 

Can I find historical data on an offender?

The VINE system tracks an offender's in-custody status and date of release only. Historical data is not available. Offenders are deleted from our database usually within two weeks of release.

 

How do I stop receiving unwanted notification calls?

Please call the toll-free number associated with the state where the offender is being housed and select the option to speak with an operator. Please provide the state in which the offender is housed, as well as the phone number that is being called. With this information we will be able to research the problem and assist with getting the notification calls stopped.

How do I search for an offender and register to receive notification using VINELink?

Please note that you may register to receive notification for custody status changes only for offenders currently in custody. To use VINELink to search for an offender in custody, please follow these steps:

  1. Go to www.vinelink.com
  2. Click on the state in which the offender is housed.
  3. Choose the Search & Register tab at the top of the navigation page.
  4. Select the Facility or Facilities that you would like to search, type in the Offender Identification number or the full Last Name and at least the first initial of the First Name, then click Search.
  5. Verify the information for the offender that matches the person for whom you search.

To use VINELink to register to receive notification about changes in an offender' custody status, please follow these steps:

  1. Complete steps 1 through 5 above.
  2. Click on the magnifying glass icon under the Register/Details column next to the appropriate offender.
  3. On the Offender Details screen, choose your Method of Registration, then click Continue.
  4. Complete the required information for registration.
  5. Click Register.Why can't I access VINELink?

If you' having trouble accessing VINELink, you may need to clear your browser cookies and temporary Internet files. To do this:

  1. Open Internet Explorer and go to Tools, Internet Options. The General tab appears.
  2. In the Browsing History section, click the Delete button. The Delete Browsing History screen appears.
  3. In the Temporary Internet Files section, click the Delete Files button. Click Yes to confirm the deletion.
  4. In the Cookies section, click the Delete Cookies button. Click Yes to confirm the deletion.
  5. Click Close, then click OK to exit the Internet Options screen.
  6. Restart your browser and try to access VINELink.

If this does not resolve your issue then you may need to add VINELink to your Internet Explorer browser' Trusted Site list using the following steps:

  1. Open Internet Explorer and go to Tools, Internet Options.
  2. Click the Security tab, click on Trusted sites, then click the Sites button.
  3. In the Add this website to the zone: box, type http://www.vinelink.com, click Close, and OK.
  4. Restart your browser and try to access VINELink.

If this does not resolve your issue, please contact our service center directly for further assistance. Note: The service center phone number is listed at the home page of each state's site.

 

Can VINElink.com remove or change offender information on your website?

VINE is funded and provided by local and state agencies for the purpose of notifying victims upon a change in their offender’s custody status. We provide this service as a third party and do not have the ability to remove or alter offender data in the database. However, we work closely with the agencies to ensure data integrity and accuracy. If you have found incorrect data on the VINELink site, please call your local Department of Correction or jail facility to report the inaccuracy to them directly so that they might make the change in their database as appropriate.

 

What are the telephone "ID number" and "Email address" from which I can expect notification from the Inmate Release Notification System?

When you receive a notification from this system (powered by VINE), you will see the following telephone number on your caller ID: 502-213-2798. If you register for email notification, you will receive a message from the following email address: vine@globalnotifications.com

 

Are offender photos on VINELink?

VINELink now has the ability to display offender photos. This is a configurable option. Currently, 45 County Correctional Facilities in the State of New York provide the victim with the option of viewing the offender's photos. This is a work in progress with a target of all 60 County Correctional Facilities having this option in the near future.

 

Does VINELink support Spanish web content?

Yes. VINELink supports Spanish web content on the National Resources Tab. VINELink also supports Spanish web content at the state level. This feature is available in the State of New York.