~ once again – there is no national criminal history database ~


The FBI will check fingerprints for matches in their crime information database, a national source for criminal histories. Some states now require nursing homes to submit fingerprints of new hires to the FBI for a criminal background check. Could this promote a false sense that the FBI criminal history search is a complete nationwide repository for criminal information?

The study, conducted by Craig N. Winston, an assistant professor of criminal justice at Sonoma State University, found that the FBI data lacks proper identifiers to credibly link a criminal hit with the subject of the investigation.

Another finding was the large number of missed records and false positives generated. For example, when analyzing a sampling of 93,274 background checks in the state of Florida, Winston’s search revealed that the database missed 11.7 percent of the criminal records it should have identified. Even worse -of the more than 10,000 criminal records found, 5.5 percent of them were falsely attributed to those who were not convicted of a crime. Read the study

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