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Georgia Court Records

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Georgia Warrant Search

A Georgia warrant search can provide inquirers with information regarding writs issued on a person or property within state limits. A warrant is a court order that overrides an individual's rights to privacy and freedom and authorizes law enforcement to conduct a search or arrest. Two occasions can lead to the issuance of a warrant by a court: first, if there is a cause to believe that a person is involved in a crime and if an individual fails to appear in court for a hearing.

There is no state-wide repository in which interested persons can perform a warrant search. However, individuals can look up warrant records online or in person at the Sheriff's Office in most counties. In a few instances, one may find warrant records as part of a case file so that inquirers may search for warrants through the superior or magistrate court of the jurisdiction concerned. 

Are Warrants Public Records in Georgia

Yes. Georgia warrants are public pursuant to the Open Records Act. This law provides members of the public the liberty to obtain and make copies of records (Official Code of Georgia Annotated (O.C.G.A.) §§ 50-18-70). 

There is no exception to the openness of a warrant in Georgia once it has been issued and executed. However, certain information may be exempt from public disclosure before its execution. 

Types of Warrants in Georgia

Types of warrants in Georgia include civil capias, extradition, fugitive, alias, and federal arrest warrants. The most common types issued in Georgia include:

  • Search warrant: A search warrant is requested by the law enforcement agency with jurisdiction over the case. This document grants them the right to thoroughly search the place as stated on the order (and no place more). For example, a warrant to search a person's office space would not cover searching their residence.
  • Bench warrant: a bench warrant is not the consequence of a crime but the result of the failure of an individual earlier summoned to the court to show up. 
  • Arrest warrant: this is arguably the most common type of warrant. It is a formal order authorizing law enforcement to apprehend a member of the public. It is issued when the arresting agency has submitted sufficient evidence proving that a resident broke the law. 

What is a Search Warrant in Georgia?

As a result of the Fourth Amendment to the national constitution, it is unlawful for authorities to ransack or seize private property without 'probable cause.' This is why a search warrant is necessary. 

A Georgia search warrant permits law enforcement to search an individual or property. It is customarily issued by a judicial officer and presented to the subject before the search. 

Per GA Code § 17-5-25, a search arrest is valid for 10 days from the day it is issued, after which it is deemed invalid. 

How Long Does It Take to Get a Search Warrant?

There has yet to be a stated processing time frame for authorities to get a search warrant in Georgia. A warrant is signed and issued by the court to law enforcement once it is proven that there is probable cause for the search of a residence or place. Hence, the time frame for a warrant to be granted would only be the soonest or latest that an applicant can provide believable evidence to warrant the issuance of a search order. 

What is an Arrest Warrant in Georgia?

An arrest warrant is a court-issued document authorizing the arrest and detention of the subject on the warrant. While arrest warrants are required for an individual's apprehension and detention, an arrest can occur without a warrant if an offense was committed before an officer. Arrest warrants are used only in criminal cases. 

To get an arrest warrant, a law enforcement officer must prove that there is probable cause to arrest a resident. It is said that there is probable cause if the evidence provided can make any reasonable individual believe that an offense is about to be committed, is in the process, or has been committed. Once established, the applicant would be granted the warrant. The judicial officer granting the warrant does so on behalf of the state. Per Georgia Code Title 17. Criminal procedure § 17-4-40, any judicial officer with the power of a magistrate can issue an arrest warrant.

The content of an arrest warrant, according to GA Code § 17-4-41, includes crime, the time it was committed, the date, place of occurrence, the victim, and a description of the offense, including the county where the crime was committed.

If the offense is theft, the warrant issued would include the name of the alleged stolen property, including its description and value. It would also feature the name of the property's owner and the individual from whom the property was stolen.

The content of the warrant would be the fact presented to the suspect as the reason for their arrest.

A warrant arrest does not have a limitation status in Georgia. Once it is issued, it will continue to be active if it is not resolved (by the suspect being arrested or bail if it applies).

Arrest Warrant Lookup in Georgia

Arrest warrants are maintained by local law enforcement agencies (like county Sheriff's offices or courthouses) in Georgia. The procedure for looking up an arrest warrant in the state differs per county, as each county provides different options citizens can use to access warrants. e. 

Inquirers may obtain information on an arrest warrant from the Office of the Sheriff online or over the phone. In some cases, visiting the office may be required. 

To make a phone request for warrant information, inquirers must provide information to facilitate the search. For in-person requests, the inquirer would need to provide a government-issued ID.

For counties that provide arrest warrants online, inquirers may conduct remote searches using the subject's name and other biodata. One of such counties where this is possible is Appling County.

Researchers can check court case files to search for an arrest warrant (in cases where this applies) using a name or case number. This may be done either online on the court's web page or in person at the courthouse.

How to Find Out If You Have a Warrant in Georgia

To find out if you have a warrant in Georgia, inquirers may query the county Sheriff's office or the courthouse in the judicial district where the warrant was issued.

Individuals may contact the Superior County courthouse directly or search the court's website for criminal history information (typically featuring warrants).

Similarly, a researcher can simply check the County Sheriff's web page, call the office, mail, or query the office in person. In some counties, a list of active warrants is published online, while other counties may provide a search tool. In other cases, that may not be the practice, and the inquirer would have to call the office, send mail, or visit to the office.

Bear in mind that if there is a warrant for an individual visiting the Sheriff's office in person, such an inquirer may be arrested immediately.

Free Warrant Search in Georgia

Public agencies that maintain warrant records in the state customarily make them available to the public at no cost. Interested persons can query the agency in person or via mail to retrieve this information. Inquirers may also visit the Sheriff's office or a courthouse to inspect records.

How to Find Out If Someone Has A Warrant Online

Members of the public can check for active or outstanding warrants online on the web page of the Sheriff's office or in person. Some offices publish a PDF document of a list of warrants in the county online. In contrast, others provide a search tool that citizens can use to find warrants. Also, warrants are sometimes a part of the documents found in a case file. A researcher can either check with the clerk at a given courthouse during work hours or use the case management tool on the court's site to search for warrants. Most platforms allow for name searches, although some can use a case number. 

Interested persons can also find out if someone has a warrant online through government-approved third-party or private vendors. Most such sites offer state-wide warrant searches, which are easy to navigate. Searches would go for a fee on these sites, and the amount may vary from one to another depending on the scope of information sorted. 

How Long Do Warrants Last in Georgia

Warrants in Georgia are active for the duration stated in the statute of limitation. This normally is dependent on the type of offense committed. To this end, some warrants remain active and can be recalled unless sealed or expunged. A bench and arrest are examples of such warrants. On the other hand, search warrants only have a 10-day life span, after which another one would need to be issued if the case still needs to be resolved.

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Georgia Warrant Search