The criminal history repository is the database (or the agency housing the database) that maintains criminal history records on all state offenders. Records include fingerprint files and files containing identification segments and notations of arrests and dispositions.

The criminal history repository is generally responsible for state-level identification of arrestees, and it serves as the sole conduit of fingerprint based  criminal history records to national indices that are administered and maintained by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Criminal Justice Information Services (CJIS) Division in Clarksburg, West Virginia. Non-fingerprint-based inquiries from local agencies for a national records check are also included and routed to the FBI via the criminal history repository. 

The Criminal Justice Information Services Systems Agency (CSA) is often the repository agency responsible for contact with FBI record systems such as the National Crime Information Center (NCIC), the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS Index), and the Interstate Identification Index (III). It also serves as the state focal point to FBI/CJIS administered programs such as the National Crime Prevention and Privacy Compact, the National Fingerprint File (NFF), and Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) programs.

Although usually housed in the Department of Public Safety, the repository agency is maintained in some states by the State Police, Attorney General, or other state agency. Customarily, state criminal history repositories are charged under state law with the following:

Establishing and maintaining comprehensive criminal history records
Establishing an efficient and timely record retrieval system
Ensuring accurate and up-to-date records
Establishing rules and regulations governing the dissemination of criminal history records to criminal justice and noncriminal justice users
Establishing and maintaining suitable criminal history record exchanges with local, state and national indices that are administered and maintained by the FBI


Each state varies in its warrant management practices. Some states have a central warrant repository, some have a series of networked systems, and some rely on the FBI's NCIC Wanted Person File (WPF). There is a significant distinction between the NCIC Wanted Person File and a warrant management system in that the WPF permits the ORI (originating law enforcement agency) to enter only one warrant per person. Because of this limitation ORIs with multiple warrants for a single person generally ensure that the warrant for the most serious offense is forwarded to and maintained on NCIC.


Dispositions are maintained by a state's criminal history repository.