Find if Someone Was Arrested

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How to Find if Someone Was Arrested

Getting arrested is obviously not something that anybody ever intends to do. Whether it’s for unpaid tickets, traffic violations, misdemeanor drug possession or a more serious offense, keeping records is always smart so you know where you stand down the road. It can also be useful to know who else you know has been arrested, or has a criminal record. Knowing ” how to find if someone was arrested “, can be useful information for a multitude of reasons.

Of course, finding arrest records on individuals other than yourself may become a necessity if you’re hiring for a business or looking for legal documents related to family members. The concept of searching out old arrest records can be pretty confusing if you’re not an attorney or familiar with the system though.

Luckily, there are a variety of ways that average people can look up records to see if someone was arrested in the past. Keep reading to educate yourself before you start your search for past criminal and arrest records.

How to Find if Someone Was ArrestedWhat is an Arrest Record?

An arrest record is commonly referred to as a criminal record. In fact, most people that you come across will refer to records using this more common nomenclature. In the simplest terms, an arrest record is a document designed to detail a person’s criminal history.

On an arrest record, you may find one or more criminal charges. In some cases, old criminal charges may be removed, particularly if an individual committed a crime when they were a minor and now they are an adult. That’s because old arrests are often expunged so they don’t retroactively penalize a person for past mistakes many years later.

Arrest records are typically held by law enforcement agencies or judicial administrative arms if a court case went in front of a judge.

Are Arrest Records Public?

Arrest records are generally available to individuals of the public. However, if a case is currently ongoing, is in court or there is simply suspicion about whether a person committed a crime, you may not be able to find any record at all.

Old records where a person was not convicted of the crime are also sealed and not made public, though most police and judicial systems do keep these records. Expunged records for minors or individuals who performed community service, for example, are not available to the public either.

How to Find Arrest Records

  • Request your own criminal records from the state where you were arrested. For example, you can get your own records from the state of California here. You may be required to submit fingerprints to prove your identity.
  • Go to the country clerk’s office in the country where the person was arrested if you are looking for records on someone else. You may be able to request these records online with a fee associated, though you are not likely to get a copy of official records.
  • Use a third-party search site to do a basic search. While these are not official records, they can provide information very quickly.
  • Hire a private investigator or attorney to help you. This is often an ideal option if you’re trying to find old arrest records or perform a background check on somebody like a potential employee.

Checking arrest charges can seem complex, but there are a few ways you can find your own. You may also be able to find another individual’s arrest record using the methods outlined in the ” how to find arrest records ” list above.

Types of Arrest Records

Arrest records can give you an idea of a person’s past, but there are a few different types of crimes to look for. Here are some of the most common types you’ll see after a successful search:

  • Misdemeanor records. These records are reserved for minor offenses and typically do not have a major impact on a person’s future. Misdemeanor offenses may fall off your criminal record after a certain amount of time depending on the state you’re in as well.
  • Traffic records. These are reserved for traffic violations and crimes related to things like large amounts of unpaid parking tickets.
  • Felony records. More serious crimes like drug sales, arson, assault and murder are often listed as felonies. These tend to stay on a person’s record for many years. In some cases, a felony charge will never be removed.

These are just a few of the most common types of criminal records you can find online and through in-person searches. Other types of arrest records may exist depending on the jurisdiction where the report was created.

Do You Get a Criminal Record for Being Arrested?

A criminal record is simply a recording of a crime that has been committed. For this reason, a criminal record is created every time an individual is arrested. If the person has been arrested before, a new crime will be added on that date.

However, it’s important to note that not all criminal records are serious or problematic for everyone. A misdemeanor, for example, will likely fall of your record before long. Felonies, on the other hand, may stay on your record permanently.

Finding a criminal record, whether you’re looking for your own or somebody else’s, doesn’t have to be hard. With this guide, you should be able to find your own history or get basic information about potential employees, family members and anybody else in your area.

Are arrest records considered a criminal record?

Not necessarily unless that person is convicted of a crime in a court of law. In the United States, people are presumed innocent until proven guilty so an arrest may not transpire to a criminal record if that person is found innocent.

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Responses to “Find if Someone Was Arrested

  1. I have searched high & low without resolution. Last stop, Attorney – trying to avoid that if at all possible. In 2006 I was arrested – charges: 1)expired tag, 2)possession of paraphernalia, 3)possession of a controlled substance. Charges 1-3 dropped, I was held on charge 4. First time offender, participated in drug court, completed successful, case dismissed. That was nearly 15 years ago. My record looks horrendous as though I’ve been arrested hundreds of times. Locating the dismissal entry is practically impossible but it’s there. It seems as though this won’t just fall off of my record. Any recommendations on cleaning it off and clearing it all out? Thanks in advance!

    1. Catman, unfortunately we cannot assist you with your search for arrest records without a name, age and state of residency

  2. Yes I’m trying to find out if my mother has a warrant for her arrest I was pulled over tonight driving my moms cars and the cop was very nice and told me to let my mother know that there was a warrant for her arrest in phenix ciry Alabama I was told this by the lee county sheriff but if wouldnt tell me what it was for or how long the warrant has been can u plz let me know if she does have a warranty for her arrest. Cathy Radford age63 said warrant was out of phenix city Alabama. thank you

  3. Until you are convicted of the charge you were arrested for, it shouldn\’t be on your criminal record. Innocent until proven guilty

    How do I find out if someone was arrested but released on ROR?
    I looked through the the search options online and they cost money. This person was \”supposedly\” arrested on 11/26/19 around 8pm in phila, PA. I do not believe her but don\’t want to accuse if I am wrong.

    1. Amy, since this was a recent arrest there will most likely not be a criminal record attached since arrest records are not necessarily criminal records. A criminal record means that person was convicted of a crime in a court of law.

Author: SQAdmin
Last Updated: November 17, 2020

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