Rhode Island Warrant Search

Name Phone Number License Plate VIN
Name Phone Number License Plate VIN

How to Run a Rhode Island Warrant Search 

A warrant in Rhode Island, like in any other state, is a court order that authorizes law enforcement to perform a particular action, which sometimes results in an arrest. Warrants are often linked to a person’s criminal record and are also considered public records that are accessible by anyone. The easiest way to perform a Rhode Island arrest warrant search or Rhode Island bench warrant search is to use the resources of a public record website. You will need to know the full name of the person of interest, then you will simply enter it into the search form to begin. Once the results are displayed make sure you have the correct person, as sometimes there is more than one listing since some names are common in the state. You may need a middle name or the person’s age to discern the results. Then after you’ve found the correct person, you can view their active warrants, criminal history, arrests and incarcerations. 

Understanding Warrants in Rhode Island 

Rhode Island, the smallest state in the United States, has a legal system that focuses on public safety, like every other state in the US. An important part of the state’s legal system are warrants, which hold those people accountable that have broken the law, were in an alleged criminal activity, or missed a court appearance. Understanding Rhode Island warrants, the different types of RI warrants, how to look them up, and what to do if you find yourself with a warrant is handy information to have. They are public record, that anyone can view them online. 

Types of Rhode Island Warrants 

In Rhode Island, there are several types of warrants, each serving unique purposes and allowing for varying levels of law enforcement involvement. 

  • Rhode Island Arrest Warrants: These types of warrants are issued directly by a criminal court judge when there’s probable cause to that a person in Rhode Island has committed a crime. This authorizes law enforcement to arrest and detain the person named, place them in jail or a holding facility until they can be brought to court for a trial in a RI superior court or a RI federal district court.
  • Rhode Island Bench Warrants: These are also issued by a judge or the “bench” against individuals who fail to make their required court appearance, miss their jury duty, disobey a court order, or have unpaid court fees. This can lead to an arrest, however most of the time it is just a summons to appear in court. 

Criminal Record Search

Rhode Island Warrants Are Criminal Records

Rhode Island warrants are a significant part of a person’s criminal record, especially if is an RI arrest warrant. An arrest warrant indicates that the person named has been suspected of a crime, which becomes a searchable part of their criminal history. Since this is also a public record, it can have a dramatic impact on a person’s life. It can make certain prospects more difficult, such as gaining employment prospects, housing rental applications, academic applications, traveling opportunities, or future relationships. A bench warrant is way less impactful than an arrest warrant, however both become a part of a person’s criminal history.

What To Do If You Have an Arrest Warrant in Rhode Island

If you find out that you have an active Rhode Island arrest warrant, the first step is to gather as much information as possible which can be done online through public record websites. The next step is very important, below are some options that can be helpful to consider. 

  • Contact an Attorney: The first call you might want to make is to a Rhode Island criminal defense attorney. They can help you understand your rights, provide legal advice, and guide you through the process. You may have to pay them a retainer for their services, but it can be worth it depending on the nature of your arrest warrant. 
  • Turn Yourself In: The next step after consulting with your attorney might be to turn yourself in to the proper RI law enforcement authorities. This will show to the court your willingness to cooperate and is usually looked upon favorably. In some less serious situations, it might be possible to have an attorney schedule a court appearance, instead of surrendering yourself, but you will first need to see if that is an option. This is a much better option than being arrested at home, work, or while you are driving somewhere. It is much less embarrassing to surrender yourself, as well as having some time to get your life in order before having to go to jail.
  • Prepare Your Defense: While working with your attorney, gather all the criminal case information you can about the criminal allegations, find any evidence that can help support your case and any potential witnesses that can corroborate your story.  

Rhode Island warrants are important legal instruments that help to maintain public safety in the state, as well as being life-changing events for an individual. Having a basic understanding of their types, how to look them up, their connection to criminal records, and how to act upon them, is useful information for anyone to know. Even if you don’t commit any crimes, a missed court appearance or jury duty can lead to a warrant in your name. With the advent of online public record websites people in Rhode Island have the ability to research this information and do it anonymously. If you suspect you may have a warrant or want to make sure your criminal record is accurate you might consider running a background check on yourself. Doing this periodically can be very helpful in managing your public record and making sure you don’t end up with a court summons or being arrested for something that could have been avoided. 

Warrant Search By State

Rhode Island Warrant Search

Rhode Island FAQ

Can I run a Rhode Island arrest warrant for free?

Yes, if you know the county or jurisdiction that a warrant was issued in Rhode Island you can sometimes use the relevant court website or law enforcement website to search for free. If you are uncertain what county or jurisdiction you can use a public record website where you can search statewide or sometimes nationwide with a first and last name.

What should I do if I have a bench warrant in Rhode Island?

If you have a bench warrant for a missed court appearance than you can sometimes reschedule with the courthouse clerk to avoid any penalties or being arrested. If it's a more serious bench warrant then you may consider talking to an attorney to find out your best course of action.

Can a Rhode Island bench warrant be cleared?

Yes, it is possible to have a bench warrant cleared by appearing before the court and addressing the reason for the warrant, or rescheduling a missed court date.

What happens after an arrest warrant is issued in Rhode Island?

Rhode Island law enforcement officers will try to locate and arrest the individual named in the warrant. The arrested person will usually be detained until they can be brought before a judge for further legal proceedings.

Do I have a Rhode Island warrant?

You can find out easily and anonymously if you have an active Rhode Island warrant by using a public record website. Since warrant records are public information you can quickly search them with a first and last name on a reliable public record site.

What is probable cause for a Rhode Island arrest warrant?

Probable cause is a term used by the courts that says based on facts or evidence, that a crime has been committed and the person involved in that alleged crime is to be arrested.

Do arrest warrants expire in Rhode Island?

Not typically, most arrest warrants do not expire but they can be withdrawn by the issuing judge if new evidence emerges.

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Last Updated: 2023-07-26

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