FAQ on How to Search Arrest Records Using SpyFly’s Public Record Search Tool

Are Arrest Records Public?

Any time a person gets officially arrested the government makes a record of it. The record includes details such as the name, birthdate, address, and other identifying information as well as the charges that have been filed against the person. Some arrest records can be public, while others are deemed private and can not be viewed by the public. Whether or not the arrest records are public depends on the state of the arrest and the laws that are in place regarding that particular person and crime.

Are Arrest Records Private?

In some circumstances when a person is arrested, but not gone to trial for the crime, certain states can block public access to the records for security reasons. If there is a high-profile case where there is a risk of pushing a verdict one way or the other because of prejudice, the courts can choose to withhold the information until the trial is over and the case is done.

Are Arrest Records Accurate?

Arrest records in general are not a solid source of information. Yes, they provide information regarding the arrestee, the crime, and the arrest details. However, they can be very old and very misinformative. Many times when the police arrest a person they are not sure of the exact crime that had taken place. In order to make sure that one of the charges actually sticks through the trial they get creative and pile several charges onto one charge. For instance, if somebody is driving under the influence of alcohol and they get into an accident with another car, the police could charge the person with drunk driving, and assault with a deadly weapon. An arrest record does not mean that the person actually committed the crime.

Arrests vs Convictions - What is the Difference?

We already know that when somebody gets arrested for a crime that they automatically generate an arrest record. We also already know that arrests can be for whatever reason the police deem appropriate for the alleged crime. Being arrested for a crime is only being accused of that crime. When somebody is convicted for a crime it means that they went through the court system and were either found guilty by a jury, or they admitted guilt out of their own free will. This is the difference between fact and speculation. An arrest is only when the courts speculate that a person has committed a crime. A conviction is when the courts prove that the person committed the crime that was only speculation, to begin with.

Finding Arrest Records

You can find arrest records in a few different ways. You could call the court office where you suspect the arrest records are and go through the motions to request access, pay the fee, and wait. You could do an internet search and find out if the court office that the arrest took place in has a public database that you can search through. You can also do it the easy way and search for arrest records on SpyFly.

How To Find Arrest Records?

Finding arrest records can be a bit tricky sometimes. If you do it the old fashioned way, you have to know where the arrest happened and what court you have to contact for the information. Each city in every state has its own way of dealing with arrests. Most states are made up of counties and cities where courthouses conduct all of the legal business. A couple of states, Louisiana and Alaska are a little different. Louisiana has parishes and Alaska has boroughs. All of these are similar and each handle the court systems in their own ways. If you are looking for arrest records, you have to determine where the records are.

Arrest Record Information

When a law enforcement agency makes an arrest there are several factors that get taken into consideration during the process. Is the accused individual a threat to themselves, or the general public? Are they under the influence of drugs or alcohol? What kind of crime are they accused of doing? The arresting officer will record every little detail regarding the arrestee that comes into view. Whether or not this information becomes available to the public is hard to determine. In general, the information that is included in an arrest record will be the personal information of the person arrested including name, birthdate, and address. Also they will include whatever charges have been brought against them with any evidence that could help to convict the suspect.

Can I Search Court Records?

As mentioned above, each state, county and city has its own method for keeping and recording records. If you want to find arrest records regarding a certain individual you will have to contact the office of record where the person was arrested. This, of course, is the hard way. If you are unsure of where the person has been in trouble, you will have a hard time pinpointing their arrest records. In most cases, any time you try to access records through a county office you will have such a hard time it will seem impossible. You will have to go through all of the “proper channels” in order to even get close to finding public information.

What Does a Criminal Look Like?

It would be so much easier for the police to do their jobs if criminals had a certain look to them. All people would have to do is look at a person and know whether or not they are engaged in illegal activities. It doesn’t work that way, however. Judging somebody by the way that they look can destroy a great relationship before it even starts. The ugly, scary looking guy standing next to you could very well save your life. Or the life of your loved one.

There are a lot of stereotypes in practice regarding race and gender, even still today. If you believe that race and status may determine whether or not somebody is a criminal, think about it. Martin Luther King Jr was a black man. Charles Manson was white. Which one was a criminal? How about Martha Stewart, and Snoop Dog? Which one of these two is a convicted felon? What a twisted world we live in. A society that assumes that people can be labeled as something just by the way they look.

What exactly defines a criminal anyway? If a person has multiple felony convictions that are over 20 years old, but owns a home and a business is that person a criminal? What about an impoverished young mother that steals food from the grocery store to feed her children? Is she a criminal? The questions can go on and on, but the fact of the matter is that most people label other people as criminals because they do not know any better. A criminal is a person that lives a life in a criminal manner. They make a living out of illegal means, or settle disputes illegally. They even try to control masses of people by means that are unethical and definitely illegal.

Criminals can be dirty people with torn clothes that live under bridges, or in abandoned homes. They can be men, women, transexuals, gender neutral, or even children. They can be any race, from any country. They can dress in expensive suits, or jeans and wife-beaters. They can claim to be part of whatever religious establishment that they see fit. Some criminals never even get caught.

When you do a criminal background check on a person, you can learn a lot about them, and about the way their case was handled. Public records are in place so that our country can keep the government in check. Without having documented records and thorough accountability our own government can turn into criminals. As we discussed above, governments have proven to be vulnerable to corruption unless they are monitored and held accountable. Many times people focus on the person with the record as opposed to how the government handled the situation. Public records are there for a reason. When you search for a criminal, make sure you take the extra time to verify that they actually are a criminal before you put a label on them. But still, keep yourself safe and know who you are around.

SpyFly is the Easiest Way to Search Arrest Records

When you sign up with SpyFly you get instant access to unlimited background searches and can find anybody’s arrest records within minutes. All you have to do is type in the name of the person and you will find all of the information that you could want about them. SpyFly already knows what city, county, state and country the person has records in so all of the heavy search lifting is already done for you before you even start.

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DISCLAIMER: SpyFly provides affordable, immediate access to public record information. It is PROHIBITED by law to use our service or the information contained on our website to make decisions about employment, insurance, consumer credit, tenant screening, or for any other purpose subject to the Fair Credit Reporting Act, 15 USC 1681 et seq. SpyFly does not provide private investigator services, consumer reports and is not a consumer reporting agency as defined by the Fair Credit Reporting Act. Please be EXTREMELY careful when reviewing a person's criminal history. Please DO NOT use this information without further investigating the accuracy of the information. The information available on our website may not be complete, accurate, or current. For more information, please review SpyFly's Terms of Use.