New Jersey Arrest Records
New Jersey Arrest Records are official documents that contain information about a person's arrest history in the state, including the circumstances surrounding the arrest and the charges filed against them. The law enforcement agency that made the arrest creates and maintains an arrest record at the moment of the arrest.
In New Jersey, an arrest record is not indicative of a conviction. Instead, the document provides evidence that an individual is under investigation for an alleged offense.
Apart from the charges filed, an arrest record in New Jersey will often give you the following information:
- Personal information such as the full name, date of birth, address, and other identifying information of the person arrested
- Arrest details like the date, time, and location of the arrest and the arrest description or reason
- Booking information that may include the law enforcement agency that made the arrest, the arresting officer's name and badge number, and the booking location
- Bail and bond Information, such as the amount of bail or bond set for the person's release and whether they have been released or are still in custody
- Information about the person's court appearances, such as the hearing date, time, and location
Under New Jersey's Open Public Records Act, arrest records created in the state are public documents. The legislation stipulates who can access public documents and how government entities must share them. Hence, law enforcement agencies in New Jersey compile public arrest records and make them accessible for a nominal fee to anybody who requests them.
Even though New Jersey Arrest Records are usually open to the public, sensitive information like a victim's or witness's name may be removed to protect their privacy. Also, information about juvenile arrests and some records expunged may not be available to the public.
What Laws Govern Arrests in New Jersey?
State and federal laws govern arrests in New Jersey. Some of the critical rules and regulations that apply to arrests in New Jersey include the following:
The New Jersey Code of Criminal Justice
The New Jersey Code of Criminal Justice (NJCCJ) outlines the procedures for arrests in the state. According to the code, an arrest may be made with a warrant issued by a judge based on probable cause (section 2C:20-14) or without a warrant (section 2C:104-5) if the officer has reasonable grounds to believe that the individual has committed a crime.
If an officer arrests without a warrant, the officer must file a criminal complaint with the court within a specific time to justify the arrest.
The Fourth Amendment
The Fourth Amendment requires that the government obtain a warrant based on probable cause and describe the specific place and items to be searched or seized before conducting a search or seizure of a person, their home, or their belongings.
The New Jersey Court Rules
As per New Jersey Court Rules (NJCR) 3:2-3, if the defendant's identity is unknown, it shall include any name or description that reasonably identifies the defendant. A warrant must also have a signature from the judicial officer—judge, clerk, deputy clerk, authorized municipal court administrator or approved deputy municipal court administrator.
Under the NJCR 7:2-3, every authorized official may execute an arrest warrant valid across the state. A law enforcement officer detaining a defendant outside the court that issued the warrant must immediately take the defendant before the closest committing judge authorized to admit to bail.
The New Jersey Bail Reform and Speedy Trial Act
This law requires defendants to be in a trial within a specific time frame, generally within 180 days of their initial appearance in court. The objective is to reduce defendants' time in jail before their case resolution.
Note that the laws and regulations governing arrests in New Jersey can be complex and subject to change. If you have any questions or concerns about your rights during an arrest, it's best to consult with an attorney.
What Is the Arrest Booking Process in New Jersey?
The arrest booking process is a critical aspect of the criminal justice system in New Jersey. It involves several steps to ensure the accused is appropriately identified, processed, and prepared for a court appearance.
Here are the critical steps in the New Jersey arrest booking process:
The first step in the arrest booking process in New Jersey is the physical arrest of the suspect.
The law enforcement officer must have probable cause to make the arrest, which means they must reasonably believe that the person has committed a crime. Once the suspect is in custody, the officer will transport them to a police station or a county jail for processing.
An officer must tell the suspect's Miranda rights when they arrest them. Miranda rights are a constitutional requirement and a "golden rule" that protects both the innocent and the guilty.
Identification of the Suspect
The second step in the booking process is the identification of the suspect. It involves collecting personal information, such as the suspect's name, address, date of birth, and social security number. The officer will also take fingerprints and a photograph (mugshot) of the suspect for identification purposes.
Searching for Outstanding Warrants
After identifying the suspect, the next step is to check for any outstanding warrants or previous criminal records. This information will be added to the suspect's file if there are any outstanding warrants or previous criminal records.
In most cases, the booking process in New Jersey involves a medical screening of the suspect. It ensures that the suspect is not suffering from any medical conditions that could require immediate attention. The medical screening may also include a drug test to determine if the suspect is under the influence of any controlled substances.
Once the medical screening is complete, the suspect will be placed in a holding cell until they are released on bail or transferred to a county jail. If the suspect is eligible for bail, they can post bail or make arrangements for a bail bond agent to post bail on their behalf.
Case File Preparation
The final step in the booking process is preparing the case file. It includes documenting all the information collected during the booking process. The case file will contain charges against the suspect and the arrest details.
What Are New Jersey Mugshot Records?
Mugshot records, often part of the New Jersey Arrest Records, are images taken of individuals arrested and booked by law enforcement agencies. These images, along with the individual's personal information, such as their name, age, and arrest details, are collected by law enforcement agencies and become part of the public record.
The purpose of a mugshot is to give law enforcement a picture of an arrested person so that victims, the public, or investigators can easily recognize them. In some cases, mugshot records may be used by employers, landlords, or other interested parties to conduct background checks on individuals.
Furthermore, mugshot records may also be available through court records. You can request these records electronically via the New Jersey Judiciary website or visit the appropriate courthouse in the county where the person was arrested and found guilty. In this method, the convict's name and date of birth are essential requirements.
You can also contact the county sheriff's office where the arrest occurred and request a copy of the mugshot record. In some cases, the sheriff's office may provide them over the phone or online, while in other cases, you may need to visit the office in person.
Lastly, you can get a mugshot from the local police station that contains the subject's arrest records.
Note that not all government offices in New Jersey post mugshots of people arrested or convicted in the state. In addition, mugshots are only viewable for a limited period, primarily for those detained without convictions.
How Long Does an Arrest Record Stay in New Jersey?
In New Jersey, an arrest record is a permanent record of an individual's arrest and subsequent booking. The record will remain on file indefinitely, and law enforcement agencies, employers, and other interested parties can access them anytime.
However, in some cases, an individual may be eligible to have their arrest record expunged. Expungement is a legal process that allows individuals to have certain criminal records, including arrests, removed from their records. Expungement in New Jersey aims to give individuals a fresh start and help them move on from their past mistakes.
How To Expunge an Arrest Record in New Jersey?
As previously stated, expungement is the legal procedure to remove an arrest or conviction from a person's record. An expungement is a valuable tool to help individuals overcome their past mistakes and access better employment opportunities, housing, and other benefits.
In the case of arrests that did not result in a conviction or for which no charges were filed, offenders may immediately ask the court to have them removed. Expungement for arrests without convictions is limitless in New Jersey.
But if the arrest resulted in a conviction record, the eligibility for expunging New Jersey Arrest Records will vary based on various factors such as the type of offense, the number of convictions, the waiting period, and the completion of a sentence or probation.
In most cases, an offender must wait five years after serving their sentence and paying all fines and fees. If an offender has an indictable crime, they can only expunge three disorderly person offenses. But if they don't have an indictable crime record and any prior criminal history, they can expunge up to five disorderly or petty disorderly person offenses.
Steps in Expunging an Arrest Record in New Jersey
Once eligible for expungement, the next step is to obtain the necessary court documents. It includes obtaining a copy of a criminal record and court documents related to arrest and conviction. In addition, an offender must have the necessary New Jersey Courts forms, which include the Petition for Expungement, Order for Hearing, and Expungement Order.
Check this manual for the essential paperwork.
After accomplishing the necessary documents, file a petition for expungement with the court in the county where the arrest occurred. The petition must have detailed information about the offense, sentencing, and other relevant details.
After filing the petition, the offender must attend a hearing. At the hearing, a judge will review the petition and consider any objections from law enforcement or other interested parties. If the judge approves the petition, the arrest record will be deleted.
How To Search New Jersey Arrest Records?
Even though the state doesn't have a central place for arrest records, law enforcement agencies that make arrests regularly make, collect, store, and share them. So, anyone who wants to see New Jersey Arrest Records can ask at the local police station or sheriff's office.
Alternatively, you can search for arrest records online if the agency has a website with a database that you can use. You can try searching these records using the online tools provided by the Criminal Practice Division of the New Jersey Courts.
In New Jersey, an arrest record is also part of a person's criminal history. Therefore, you can ask the Criminal History Record Information (CHRI) of the New Jersey State Police for a copy of a criminal history record to look at information about arrests.
The State Police give various alternatives for acquiring arrests and criminal records in New Jersey. They process most criminal record inquiries using fingerprints, but the agency also permits name-based searches. Each request incurs a small fee from the unit.
Counties in New Jersey
- Cape May
Jails and Prisons in New Jersey
List of Content
- What Laws Govern Arrests in New Jersey?
- What Is the Arrest Booking Process in New Jersey?
- What Are New Jersey Mugshot Records?
- How Long Does an Arrest Record Stay in New Jersey?
- How To Expunge an Arrest Record in New Jersey?
- How To Search New Jersey Arrest Records?