Real Estate

Arrested – How do you know if you have a warrant?

The following is a scenario that could very well happen to the average law abiding, but somewhat forgetful citizen:

You are having a stellar day: the weather is magnificent; You have just closed a deal in the office that is a great advantage to you; and a beautiful woman (or cute boy) just gave you a nice cheeky smile. You feel healthy, rich and wise. But then when you get close to your car, you see something that spoils us all day: a parking ticket hidden under the wiper blade. You take it out, annoyed, and once you’re in the car, you toss it in the glove compartment and go back to your earlier, more pleasant thoughts.

A couple of months later, having completely forgotten about the parking ticket, he is pulled over for a minor traffic violation. The police officer performs a routine check on your on-board computer and, finding a pending arrest warrant, arrests you.

If you have any reason to suspect that you have a pending court order, you can check its status by asking the proper authorities. However, different cities and counties have different policies and systems in place regarding how information about pending orders can be accessed.

In the case of New York City, the FAQ page of the NYPD website contains the relevant details on who to contact. Under the question, “I think I have an arrest warrant. How do I find out?” tell us that, “You can contact the Warrant Section Telephone Inquiry Unit at (718) 217-8484. You will be asked a series of questions and an investigator will search the records for you.”

On the other hand, the FAQ page of the Los Angeles Police Department website recounts this sobering news under the heading “Wishes or Court Orders”: “If you want to know if there is a desire or a pending court order for you, you should Appear in person at a Los Angeles Police Department. Community Police Station. No specific information about the desire or court order is provided over the phone. “

The San Diego County Sheriff’s Department has an online warrant inquiry system, the database of which is updated every 24 hours. Simply enter a name and date of birth in the appropriate fields to find out whether or not there is a pending court order on that person. If there is, the system provides detailed information about it, including the type of court order, the number, the date of issuance, the issuing court, the main charge, the degree of the crime (misdemeanor or felony), the amount of the bond and whether or not a court appearance is. required.

Many cities, like Austin, Texas, for example, offer you the option of calling or looking up court order details online. The Austin Municipal Court website states that, “You can call our interactive voice response system at 512-974-4800. Choose the warrant option from the voice menu. You can also search for your warrant online. .. “lives in San Francisco County, you can contact the Central Authorization Office by phone at (415) 553-1871. The FAQ page of the City of Santa Maria, California website advises that “to find out if you have an arrest warrant, you must contact the Superior Court at (805) 614-6590.”

So when it comes to asking about pending court orders, who you ask and how you can contact them varies from place to place. In many cases, you can obtain court order information online. For example, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement has a Wanted page on its Public Access System website that provides information on court orders throughout the state. But they do include this disclaimer:

“FDLE cannot represent that this information is current, active, or complete. You should verify that the court order is active with your local law enforcement or reporting agency.”

Of course, if you discover that there is an active warrant for your arrest, you will need to contact your local law enforcement agency or the court that issued the warrant to find out what steps you need to take to resolve the issue. .

One thing I don’t recommend is using one of the many websites that charge a fee to find information on outstanding warranties. I recommend not doing it for two reasons:

  1. This is information that you can find on your own for free.
  2. There is no reason to believe that these for-profit websites access or provide accurate information.

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