New Mexico Arrest Records and Warrant Search
What is an arrest record?
In New Mexico, the Department of Public safety has been designated as the official collector of crime history data. The agency maintains the central repository of information on all criminal matters registered with law enforcement agencies across the state. In fact, pursuant to the Uniform Crime Reporting Act of NM, all sheriffs’ departments as well offices of county clerks are legally mandated to provide information on the criminal cases that they handle to the DPS.
Arrests records for NM include information on the issue of active warrants, detentions that have been effected under these directives, the subsequent legal course of action initiated against the accused, disposition of the matter by the courts, sentencing, incarceration and release on parole or the completion of the prison term. This information is maintained for felonies, misdemeanors as well as DWI offenses. Expect for extremely trivial matters which only call for a fine in the name of a punitive measure and/or a sentence of less than six months, information on all other criminal acts will be available in the database maintained by the DPS.
Citizens of New Mexico are offered information on the efficacy of the law enforcement machinery of the state through the issue of annual Uniform Crime Report summaries which are essentially crime statistics for the various counties of the state including specific crime averages. Apart from this, the Department of Public Safety also maintains the sex offender registry and details on missing persons.
Pursuant to the NM Arrest Records Information Act, civilian applicants are only allowed to request information on personal crime history. The agency does offer arrest records and details on New Mexico active warrants to justice agencies across the country; however, third party inquiries of this nature are not allowed. If arrest records checks are required for the purpose of immigration or adoption, the person who is the subject of the inquiry will have to seek the report personally and then furnish this to the office in question.
Among the services offered by the DPS are the facility to get fingerprint cards and notarization, both of these are requirements for initiating a warrant search in the state. The fees applicable for the various services have been given below:
- Fingerprinting without background check: $9
- FBI inquiry: $55 (needs registration)
- State warrant search: $15
- Letter of good standing :$18
- Certificate from the police: $18
- Accident reports: $10
- Notary service: $5
- Incident reports: $1 per page
Information on personal crime history can be sought personally, through an authorized agent or the legal counsel of the subject/applicant.
What is an arrest warrant?
The New Mexico Criminal Procedure section 5-208 explains the issue of arrest warrants by stating that when a criminal complaint is docketed, the magistrate may issue an active warrant or a citation depending on the nature of the crime in question, prosecution’s request, criminal history of the accused and the risk level to the society from this person.
As far as the basis of NM arrest warrants is concerned, these orders can only be issued upon a sworn written statement submitted in court by a law enforcement agency or upon the return of an indictment. In the case of the former scenario, the judge has the authority to deliberate on case facts for the determination of probable cause which is a mandatory requirement that has to be fulfilled before the judiciary can grant an arrest warrant to the cops.
An indictment is returned by the grand jury and if at that point the accused is not already being held in custody, the judge orders that an arrest warrant be issued against the alleged offender since the grand jury has already found probable cause against the accused. In this scenario, it is the prosecution that places the evidence before the bench.
As far as arrest warrants go, the complaint is generally filed by the office of the sheriff. Regardless of the pre-process followed for the issue of active warrants from NM, these directives stay in effect till the suspect is taken into custody. Information on outstanding warrants is freely shared within the justice community including the FBI.
The form on an outstanding warrant is also explained in the rules of criminal procedure. All warrants will be in writing and they would bear the signature of the magistrate who has sanctioned them. Furthermore, arrest warrants are to have definitive information about the crime, the evidence and details about the accused which will help in identifying him positively. Typically, this would be the name of the suspect if available or a DNA profile, contact details, physical traits and information of some form of identification carried by the accused.
Outstanding warrants from NM can be served in any part of the state, the county in which it was issued and the country to that matter. In fact, it is not exceptional to find many warrants issued in felonious matter are executed outside the state. The serving of such directives refers to the accused being detained in police custody till the alleged offender can be brought before the court. If arrests occur outside the issuing county, the suspect will be deported back to the area in which the warrant was released if the crime is serious.
How to search for an inmate in the New Mexico Prison System?
Inmate locator services are offered by the New Mexico Department of Corrections that handles offender processing after the sentencing has been carried out. There are three ways in which you can connect with the DOC. You could write to them at PO Box 27116, Santa Fe, NM 87502-0116, sending in the details about the inmate that you have. Alternatively, you can call them on 505-827-8660.Like for all other states, the free Vinelink at https://www.vinelink.com is also available for New Mexico. However, the most convenient option to look for inmate records in the state is through the online prisoner search feature offered on the DOC’s website.
Visit http://search.cd.nm.gov/. You should see a form on the page with various search options including the first, last and middle name of the prisoner and his NMCD number. The latter will be available on all correspondence received from the department. Simply insert the available data and click on search to view the results of the inquiry.
The response will include information on all inmates who match the search criteria, displayed in an alphabetical order of the last name. Click the link on the right to see a picture of the convict along with additional details about him. Generally, the DOC will furnish information such as the name of the inmate, offender and NMCD numbers, his status in the correctional system, the facility where he is being held, aliases, physical traits, information on current offenses and data on past criminal involvements.
Who can search for arrest records and warrants in NM?
The Freedom of Information Laws of NM do allow people to seek information on government meetings and details on the operations of various state entities. Publicly available data is also offered to community members under these rules. However, there are three exceptions to this act which include:
- Medical records including those about mental health
- The current records of law enforcement including details on arrest warrants from NM
- Business secrets
The second exception is of concern to anybody seeking a warrant search in the state. Pursuant to these laws, only the subject can make crime history inquiries. There is no statutory obligation to offer arrest records and information on active warrants to any agency or entity except for law enforcement and justice departments. This means that even those establishments that are involved in immigration and adoption will have to ask the subject to furnish a crime history report.
The same also holds true for employment. The candidate will have to file a request with the Department of Public Safety to view his crime records. The notarized response can then be supplied to the employer.
How to Request Records Under the New Mexico Public Records Act?
To initiate a personal crime history inquiry, you can get in touch with the DPS in person or through mail. You will be required to submit fingerprint cards to get the search started. The prints can be taken at the local law enforcement agency or the office of the DPS in Santa Fe and it will cost you $9 for the first two cards and $2.50 for every subsequent card.
These will have to be submitted with the authorization for release of crime information form available at https://www.dps.nm.gov/. Once the application has been duly filled, you will have to get it notarized and send it with a $15 check or money order to Department of Public Safety at PO Box 1628, Santa Fe, NM 87504. To take the package down to the agency office in person, go to 4491 Cerrillos Rd, Santa Fe, NM 87507. It generally takes 7 to 10 working days to receive a response from the department.
How Long Does An Arrest Record or Warrant Stay On File In New Mexico?
Like in all other states, the statute of limitations does not hold in case of arrest warrants. In simple terms what this means is that there is no expiry period for active warrants from NM. These orders do not lapse unless arrests occur under their provisions. After being served, the original directive is returned to the office of the magistrate which prepares for the arraignment and bail hearing.