Arrest warrants are types of warrants issued by judges that allow police to make an arrest. Not only does the warrant approve of the arrest, but it can also include details about how that arrest must take place. Here is more information about arrest warrants.
What details do arrest warrants include?
Arrest warrants go above and beyond just giving a police officer the ability to arrest you; they can also include a lot of important details about the arrest and how it is to take place. They include your personal information, including your name, physical description, and your home address or work information. Some arrest warrants will give strict times when you can be arrested, such as only arresting you during the week between 7:00 am and 7:00 pm. Other arrest warrants will include information that goes beyond the arrest itself, often stating that you won't be released on bail because you failed to appear in court. This type of arrest warrant is called a no-bail warrant.
How do police get arrest warrants?
There are a few different ways you might have a warrant out for your arrest. The first way is through an automated system where the court will submit warrants for people who failed to appear in court. Others will be requested by police officers if they have probable cause for the arrest. For the latter, it is usually issued when a police officer or detective has reason to believe you have committed a crime, but they can't arrest you without the warrant in hand. They will get an affidavit under oath that states the information they have to get the warrant. This is given to a judge, who then decides if they can have the warrant.
What information helps them get a warrant?
In order for a police officer to get an arrest warrant, their probable cause must include specific details about why they think you are the culprit. It can't be based on assumptions, simple observations, or broad details. Just because you fit the description of someone who robbed a local donut shop does not mean they can arrest you. However, if you not only match their description, but were seen by several people near that donut shop and have prior arrests for local robberies, they might have enough evidence to get the arrest warrant.
What if mistakes were made?
If you are shown an arrest warrant that includes incorrect information, you might be able to prove that the warrant does not describe you. For example, if you have a name similar to the person on the warrant, but their physical description is different from you, they may have found the wrong person. If you can prove this, you won't be arrested. On the other hand, if it was just a clerical error, it is still valid.
If you believe you've been wrongfully arrested, you may want to seek the assistance of an experienced lawyer from a firm like Spaulding & Kitzler, LLC.