Look up the criminal background of your next date -- or anyone else

The Harris County District Clerk has made it easy to check the criminal background for anyone who may have gotten in trouble in Harris County.

It's free. It's easy. And if you have a date with someone new this weekend, why not check it out?

Visit www.hcdistrictclerk.com

Here is how it works. First, sign on and get a password. It takes just a few seconds.

If you have trouble, check out these simple instructions from the District Clerk. They're linked right here.

You want to go to the 'search our records' page. Then go to the 'criminal' tab and put in the name of your date in the 'defendant' section. Put the date's name in last name first

Then hit search.

If you find criminal cases, you can also click on the 'criminal history' tab to see if there are any more crimes your potential date has been charged with in the past.

You can also click on 'images' to get details of the alleged crimes, where he or she currently stands in the criminal justice system, and if they've been found guilty or not guilty.

Now, keep in mind -- and especially with common names -- you definitely need a date of birth and other identifiers, to make sure you're looking at the right person.

You can also look at civil cases where issues with car accidents and unpaid debts might show up.

Of course you can background not just potential dates, but anyone. The gardner, the babysitter. Even co-workers.
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