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St. Lucie County Arrest Records

St. Lucie arrest records are important components of the criminal justice system. They record the specifics of an arrest, ranging from the arrestee's personal information and the type of the alleged offense to the date and location of the arrest.

Generally, St. Lucie County arrest records are maintained by various agencies, including the St. Lucie County Clerk of Court, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE), and the arresting law enforcement agency.

St. Lucie County's criminal justice system requires law enforcement officials to make an arrest if they witness or have reasonable cause to believe an individual committed a criminal act. Pursuant to Florida Statutes Chapter 901, this authority extends to a wide range of offenses – from minor infractions and misdemeanors to more serious ones such as drug offenses, robberies, home invasions, murders, larceny, and rape cases.

Felony offenses often result in lengthy jail terms, which can be a Kafkaesque experience for the arrestee. The St. Lucie County Court Records provide valuable information about arrests, including the arrest circumstances, the charges filed, and the case outcome.

In the aftermath of an arrest, the suspect is typically taken to a local law enforcement facility for booking. During this stage, the suspect's personal identifying information and detailed account of the alleged offense are gathered, creating an official arrest record.

Depending on the circumstances, they may be released on their own recognizance, with a court appearance scheduled for a later date, or they may be held in custody until their initial appearance before a judge.

Are Arrest Records Public in St. Lucie County?

Yes, arrest records are open to the public under state law. St. Lucie County encourages public cooperation in law enforcement activities. Moreover, the Florida Public Records Act requires all government agencies, including law enforcement, to make their records available for public inspection and copying. This includes arrest records, booking information, and other documentation related to criminal cases.

However, there are certain limitations to public access to arrest records, as specified in the Florida Statutes. These restrictions include:

  • Sensitive information that could compromise the identities of victims of sex crimes or human trafficking
  • Information that could put individuals at risk
  • Personal details, such as Social Security Numbers and medical records
  • Information about ongoing investigations or court cases
  • Protecting the identities of confidential informants and witnesses assisting law enforcement
  • Information that could hinder law enforcement's ability to perform their duties effectively
  • Juvenile arrest records.

What Do Public Arrest Records Contain?

According to Florida Statute Section 119.07(1), the following information is typically considered public record and available for disclosure:

  • The name of the individual arrested
  • The name of the law enforcement agency responsible for making the arrest
  • The date, time, and location where the arrest took place
  • The specific charges filed against the arrestee
  • The final disposition of the case

St. Lucie County Crime Rate

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) released the 2017 Uniform Crime Reports (UCR) for St. Lucie County. The UCR data indicates that St. Lucie County, Florida, exhibits a crime rate that exceeds the national average. According to the most recent statistical analysis, the violent crime rate in St. Lucie County is 26.9 per 1,000 people, whereas the national average is 22.7 per 1,000 people. Similarly, the property crime rate in St. Lucie County is 42.9 per 1,000 people, compared to the national average of 35.4 per 1,000 people.

St. Lucie County Arrest Statistics

According to a January 2024 report from the Florida Department of Corrections (FDC), St. Lucie County maintained an average daily detention population of 1,384 inmates. This figure represented 2.59% of the total incarcerated population across Florida. With a population of 368,628 residents, St. Lucie County's incarceration rate stood at 3.8 per 1,000 people. This indicates a relatively lower incarceration level compared to other Florida regions.

Find St. Lucie County Arrest Records

The St. Lucie County Sheriff's Office oversees the protection of lives and property throughout the county. Persons who want to check arrest records can request them on their website. Additionally, various state and federal law enforcement agencies operate within St. Lucie County, including the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE).

To expedite the process, the following information is often required when making arrest record inquiries:

  • Date, time, and location of the incident.
  • Names of individuals involved
  • Case number
  • Type of record

Residents can look up arrest records and inmate information in St. Lucie County:

  • St. Lucie County jail maintains a publicly accessible online database that provides daily arrest reports for incarcerated individuals.
  • The Florida Department of Corrections (FDOC) maintains a database covering all Florida state prisons.
  • VINELink is a nationwide service that details offenders or criminal cases in U.S. jails and prisons.

Free Arrest Record Search in St. Lucie County

Individuals seeking to review arrest records in St. Lucie County can visit the arresting agency's physical location or check the agency's website for online access to arrest and booking records. However, to facilitate the request, it is highly recommended that the individual know the specific law enforcement agency that made the arrest, the approximate date and time the arrest occurred, and the location of the arrest.

The St. Lucie County Clerk maintains the county's official records. Individuals can contact the Public Records Department for assistance. However, some sensitive records may be restricted under Florida's Public Records Act.

Get St. Lucie County Criminal Records

In Florida, criminal records are considered public information under the state's Public Records Act, outlined in Chapter 119 of the Florida Statutes. These records document an individual's interactions with the criminal justice system, including arrests, charges, convictions, sentences, dismissals, and acquittals.

Criminal records are maintained by designated government agencies, such as the St. Lucie Sheriff's Office. Individuals in St. Lucie County can visit the records section of the sheriff's office in person to get criminal records, which are provided free of charge.

St. Lucie County Arrest Records Vs. Criminal Records

While often confused, arrest and criminal records have distinct legal meanings and implications. An arrest record only documents that an individual has been taken into custody by the authorities. It is typically maintained by the law enforcement agency responsible for the arrest. An arrest record does not imply guilt or a conviction, as charges may be dropped or dismissed at any stage.

On the other hand, a criminal record is an official document that lists an individual's convictions, including the nature of the offenses, the sentences imposed, and any probationary conditions. This document is typically maintained by the court and is a more comprehensive record of an individual's criminal history. While arrest records are generally easier to access, criminal records are more complex documents that require more extensive documentation and verification.

How Long Do Arrests Stay on Your Record?

Arrest records remain on file unless expunged or sealed. When an individual is arrested and charged, the relevant information is entered into their criminal record at the arraignment stage. The case disposition remains uncertain until trial. If the accused is subsequently acquitted, the record will reflect either a "Not Guilty" or "Dismissed" disposition. However, this does not automatically result in the erasure of the arrest record. To effectuate the removal of the record, the individual would need legal representation and a court hearing to establish the grounds for expunction.

Expunge St. Lucie County Arrest Records

Per Florida Statutes Section 943.0585, individuals with an arrest record in St. Lucie County may petition the court to seal or expunge such records. This provision is only available to individuals arrested but eventually exonerated and not found guilty of a comparable criminal offense.

As per Florida Statutes Section 943.059, sealing renders the record inaccessible to the general public, while expungement, as per Florida Statutes Section 943.0585, eradicates the record entirely. The following prerequisites must be met before the court grants a petition for record sealing:

  • The individual has never been adjudicated guilty of a criminal offense or a comparable municipal ordinance violation, nor adjudicated delinquent for committing a felony or a misdemeanor specified in section 943.051(3)(b), Florida Statutes;
  • The individual has never secured a prior records expunction or sealing under law.

For expunction, the individual must ensure:

  • Their record of arrest has been sealed for at least ten years or
  • An indictment was not filed against them for the offense;
  • Or an indictment filed against them was dismissed by the prosecutor or the court.

To have their records sealed or expunged, individuals must obtain a Certificate of Eligibility from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) before filing their request with the court. They must also attach a certified copy of the disposition of each charge they seek to have expunged or sealed to their Application for Certificate of Eligibility.

St. Lucie County Arrest Warrants

Law enforcement agencies in St. Lucie County are duty-bound to uphold the rule of law and ensure the proper procedures are followed regarding arrest warrants. An arrest warrant is a court order directing law enforcement to apprehend and bring a named individual before the court. Failure to comply with the terms of a valid arrest warrant, when able to do so, may constitute a willful disregard for a lawful court order. This is punishable as contempt of court under the Florida Statute.

Before an arrest warrant is issued, law enforcement officers must accumulate evidence establishing probable cause to believe a crime has been committed and the named individual is responsible. This evidence is then presented to the prosecutor's office, which evaluates whether the legal standard for probable cause has been satisfied. If the prosecutor deems the evidence sufficient to establish probable cause, they will petition the court to issue an arrest warrant, as authorized by Florida Rule of Criminal Procedure 3.130.

The judge makes the final decision to issue an arrest warrant. The judge reviews the evidence presented and independently determines whether probable cause exists. Once a warrant is approved and issued by the court, it is entered into law enforcement databases, allowing officers to execute it and take the named individual into custody.

There are limited circumstances under Florida law where a warrantless arrest may be permitted. However, the issuance of a valid arrest warrant by a judge is the primary mechanism for law enforcement in St. Lucie County to compel an individual's appearance before the court. An arrest warrant typically has the following details:

  • The name of the court that issued the warrant
  • The name of the defendant
  • Their physical description, including height, weight, hair color, eye color, and any other distinguishing features that might help to identify them.
  • The specific criminal charge they're facing,
  • The date the warrant was issued
  • The signature of the judge who issued the warrant
  • The bail amount

St. Lucie County Arrest Warrant Search

Individuals seeking to determine the existence of an active warrant in St. Lucie County may access various resources. They may visit the St. Lucie County Sheriff's Office in person with a valid photo identification to inquire about outstanding warrants. Warrant information is normally not communicated over the phone.

The Saint Lucie County Sheriff's Office (SLCSO) has a searchable database that provides information regarding arrest warrants issued within the county. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) also maintains a database containing information on wanted persons reported to their agency.

Do St. Lucie County Arrest Warrants Expire?

Arrest warrants in St. Lucie County remain valid indefinitely. A warrant issued by a court remains active until it is executed, recalled, or quashed by the court, the charges against the named individual are withdrawn, or the person named in the warrant dies. The arrest warrant does not automatically expire over time.

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