When it comes to the criminal records industry, a wide variety of legal factors can affect how a criminal history is processed, organized, and categorized. This, in turn, directly affects the nature of a comprehensive and accurate criminal records search. One of the most significant actions that may affect how you view the information you receive in any search of this kind is if the potential offender has any “active warrants” out on him/her. In the following discussion, we define what these types of warrants are, how it relates to the criminal justice system, as well as the best way in which to approach a search for this criminal background information.
An outstanding warrant is a court order that a person be arrested by law enforcement for a specific crime in order to be investigated further regarding his/her involvement in the crime in question. Typically, a member of the law enforcement will bring a police report before a judge for review and consideration for an authorization of this warrant. The judge or magistrate must determine if there is enough evidence from this report to issue an arrest court order.
Warrants become “active warrants” when the court ordering them gives the authorization and the law enforcement endeavors to carry it out. The time in which the warrant is yet to be served to the subject of the court order keeps the warrant outstanding. Once the law enforcement has taken the defendant into custody for arrest, the court order has been carried out; and the potential criminal is just another subject of the due process of the law that everyone is afforded.
With this in mind, it is necessary to add that in many cases, the failure of the law enforcement to locate the subjects of a court order of this nature is typically, due not to the negligence of the law enforcement, but rather the elusiveness of the potential offender. There are two reasons why a defendant of a warrant may be unavailable for questioning regarding a crime, as listed on their respective warrant: if they simply do not know about the court order, or if they are wantonly avoiding prosecution of any kind regarding the crime in question. In most cases, the subjects of these court orders do, in fact, know about the warrant orders out on them, and are avoiding the law due to the fact that they are guilty of said crime.
How do the arrest records for these types of warrant orders relate to a criminal background search? These court orders, if left unserved, are typically a part of a person’s criminal record as well as part of a wanted persons list. Every jurisdictional court and/or law enforcement department has a list of those individuals who have warrants out on them, and have yet to be found for arrest. This helps law enforcement locate offenders and helps those seeking criminal background information find outstanding warrant information.
This is why in most jurisdictions, having a court order of this kind in hand, offers a lot of liberties in regards to how the potential criminal is arrested and brought in for questioning. In most cases, having a warrant of this nature as a law enforcement official gives the probable cause they need to enter the subject’s property or premises to be able to arrest them.