What is an arrest warrant or an arrest record?
Alabama arrest warrants function in a very similar way to the way that arrest warrants function throughout the country. Essentially, an arrest warrant is permission that is granted to law enforcement officials to locate and arrest the individual named on the warrant. Because arrest warrants, despite being issued by an individual county, are executed by the authority of the state of Alabama, they are active in every county in the state.
Arrest warrants, in order to be created, must be issued and authorized by a judge or a magistrate of a given county. This can happen only after law enforcement personnel present evidence that suggests a specific individual committed a crime, and after those personnel swear under oath that all of the information that they have presented is factual to the best of their knowledge. Assuming that the judge or magistrate of the county accepts the evidence presented, then he or she will issue and sign an arrest warrant. Alabama arrest warrants must include the name of the wanted individual, the crime they are believed to have committed, and the signature of the authorizing judge.
An Alabama arrest record is, as the name implies, a record of an arrest. These records most often include the name of the individual arrested and a description of the event that led to their arrest. Although an arrest record will always be created after an arrest warrant is executed, an arrest warrant is not necessarily required to make an arrest, such as when police directly witness a crime that has been committed.
How can I find arrest warrant and arrest record information for Alabama?
Unfortunately, there is not a statewide database of active arrest warrants. However, this does not necessarily mean you won’t be able to access them. In fact, there are several ways. One way that is usually highly effective is to either contact or visit the website of the sheriff of the county in which you are searching for an arrest warrant. Some websites will contain a current database of active warrants, and for other counties you will need to speak with the sheriff’s office.
Unlike with Alabama arrest warrants, there is a statewide database of Alabama arrest records. You can access an Inmate Search Tool at http://www.doc.alabama.gov/InmateSearch.aspx, which is provided by the Alabama Department of Corrections. Please be aware that this utility only gives arrest records of those persons currently in prison in Alabama.
Alabama crime statistics
In 2010, there were a total of 178,741 crimes committed, which was a drop of 6% from the year prior. Of these, 160,000 were property crimes, a fall of 5% from 2009, and there were 18,000 violent crimes during this same period. Violent crimes showed a larger drop than any of the other types of crime with a total decline of more than 10%.