There are more jailbirds in the US than anywhere else in the world. More than 2 million of them and that's just those current lot. Those who have served out their time and released are further millions but the really troubling thing is that these people often return to crime and the trend seems to be from bad to worse from one year to the next. We simply cannot be too careful as we cross path with increasingly more people in our modern living.
While public security and enforcement do their part, it would be foolhardy not to be on our own guard too. One initiative we can take is by making use of government public records. Yes, there are Public Police Records readily available to anybody to search out the background of anyone we are suspicious of or uneasy about whether they are new acquaintance, strangers, neighbors, colleagues or whatever. All that's needed is a full name and a speculative state or county of residence.
Police are known to be excellent record keepers. Every interaction with the police will trigger the generation of a report that goes on official record. It can be anything from armed robbery to traffic violation, gun permit to address change and so forth, they have it all on file. They are hence very useful in providing information about someone especially if they are a threat to other people.
With computerization and the internet nowadays, retrieving Public Police Records from police departments is relatively easy and friendly. If time is a constraint, or you simply are not up to the fuss and fun, there are the commercial information providers to turn to. Fees will be involved but there's generally good value and they can bring extras from their private and proprietary sources too.