On July 17, the Oklahoma Department of Corrections sent Reveal from The Center for Investigative Reporting a database containing records it maintains on people who are or have been under the department’s supervision.
While the data is imperfect, it is the most complete of several incomplete and flawed data sets provided in response to a public records request filed Jan. 19, 2016.
The database has five tables:
The Offender table contains basic information about each person who is or has been under Department of Corrections, or DOC, supervision. Each person is defined by a unique DOCNumber, and each DOCNumber has one record in the Offender table. Each person is categorized as active or inactive, depending on whether the person was under the department’s supervision (as of July 2017, when the database was exported). The Offender table also has information such as race, birthdate, gender and current facility.
The ReceptionDate field in this table represents only the most recent DOC reception for that person. If you are looking for a complete record of a person’s history in the system, the OffenderReception table has a record for every time someone entered DOC supervision or changed status under supervision.
The OffenderSentence table has a record for every part of every sentence that every person is serving or has served under Department of Corrections supervision. Because of how the sentences are recorded by the department, this table does not have a unique record for every crime or charge. There are cases in which convicts are given a split sentence – a combination of prison time and probation. In these cases, there are two records – one for the incarceration and one for probation, even though they correspond to a single conviction.
The SentenceTermCode field contains information on the type of sentence – including incarceration, probation, parole, deferred sentencing, drug court, life, death and a handful of other options. (Note: The fields containing “offence” descriptions and comment represent how the Department of Corrections spelled the word “offense.”)
When the sentences are for discrete amounts of time, they include some combination of the following fields: years (Y), months (M), days (D) and SentenceTerm. SentenceTerm is the most comprehensive of the four, but required parsing and formulas to use for calculations. Sometimes, the sentence term does not show up in the Y, M or D fields and only in the SentenceTerm field, but if there are values in the Y, M and/or D fields, they are repeated in the SentenceTerm field.
OffenderReception and OffenderExit
The OffenderReception and OffenderExit tables contain records for when certain individuals (defined by their DOCNumber) entered or exited supervision by the Department of Corrections. These two tables should include a record for every reception and exit for every person under DOC supervision.
This table is used to match all the known names or aliases associated with one person to the same DOCNumber.
- The Department of Corrections has warned us that there are some errors and other issues with the older data in the database, because there was a data transfer around 2000 that was messy.
- There are some anomalous dates in various date fields throughout the tables. Some dates are listed as 1/1/1900, and some as 1/1/1753. Both are erroneous and likely resulted from errors when the department transferred data from one system to another.
- Offender (286,862 records)
- OffenderSentence (1,275,510 records)
- OffenderExit (251,274 records)
- OffenderReception (247,304 records)
- OffenderAlias (197,084 records)