There are two ways to go about a Richland County inmate search; you could either connect with the local police to find out who is being held in the jails run by them or you could get in touch with the SC Department of Corrections. This is the agency that oversees the maintenance of all state penitentiaries.
The police can be approached for a Richland County jail inmate search by showing up at their office which is on 201 John Mark Dial Drive, Columbia, South Carolina 29209. The sheriff's department has also linked their website to the database of detainees in the county jails. So, you could access the inmate locator on their site for your investigation. This is available at https://jail.richlandonline.com/public/.
The inmate finder for Richland County which is offered by the police allows an applicant to conduct name based inquiries. A similar option is also provided by the Department of Corrections. The difference will be in the results offered. The SC DOC will only be able to tell you about the prisoners held in the correctional centers run by them.
To avail this inmate lookup provision, you can go to the website of the agency at http://www.doc.sc.gov/pubweb/index.jsp. On the menu to your right, you will see the option that says "SCDC inmate search" click on this to reach the Disclaimer page. If you agree to the terms, you will be taken to the page that has the inmate finder program on it.
You can use the name of the inmate, his SID number or his SCDC ID to get information on him. The tool also has the provision for a phonetic name match. So, even if you have some idea about the first or the last name of the offender, you could easily get details such as the amount of time he is serving, the name of the correctional center where he is kept and release or parole dates. Another option for conducting a Richland County prison inmate search is to write to the DOC at P. O. Box 21787, 4444 Broad River Road, Columbia, SC 29210.