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New York Arrest Records

Arrest Records in New York are formal documents that detail a person's arrest. These records describe a person's apprehension, detainment, and questioning after alleged criminal activity.

Even though these records don't prove the arrestee's guilt, they are usually part of their New York Criminal Record. However, they can seal their record if the arrestee is not found guilty. 

New York Arrest Records typically contain the following details:

  • The arrestee's details (name, gender, date of birth, and nationality)        
  • Any aliases
  • Information about the alleged crime
  • Details of the time and place of the arrest
  • The location where the arrest happened
  • The case's current status
  • Arrest charges
  • The holding facility's location
  • Arrest disposition
  • The arresting officer's name

Are New York Arrest Records available to the general public? According to the New York Criminal Procedure Law (CPL), these records are only public when no charges have been brought against a person or when a judge releases an arrestee.

When these records become public, anyone in this state can get these documents by going to a local police station under the Freedom of Information Law (FOIL). But keep in mind that accessing and copying these records will cost at least the admin expenses of the station.

What Laws Govern Arrests in New York?

Any police officer in New York, including state patrol, deputy sheriffs, and sheriffs, may arrest with or without a valid arrest warrant.

The Article 140 of the CPL allows any officer to arrest without a warrant if:


  • A person commits a crime in front of a police officer.
  • When a police officer has reasonable grounds to believe that a person has committed a crime, whether in their appearance or not
  • When authorities suspect a person of child or domestic abuse


Aside from police officers, private citizens in this state can also make arrests under Penal Law section 35.30 and CPL section 140.30


In New York, these laws assert that private citizens may arrest another for an offense committed in their presence, even if it occurred outside of their involvement.

What Is the Arrest Booking Process in New York? 

In this state, after being advised of their Miranda rights, the arrested individual has the privilege of remaining silent and having an attorney.

After being arrested, the police will bring the arrestee to a particular precinct where they usually attempt to make a statement. At the position of the precinct, the law enforcement officer will ask the person arrested for personal information like their name, age, address, and phone number.

Then, the arresting officer will photograph the suspect, take fingerprints, search the suspect's belongings, and take anything of value from them. Officers will also conduct a thorough background check to identify any outstanding warrants. Sometimes, a medical professional may do a physical and mental health check on the suspect.

Following that, the suspect will have a single opportunity to make a phone call. 

Those who have been arrested and taken into custody in New York are typically detained until their initial hearing or until they post bail.

Most of the time, arrested individuals in New York can expect to stay in prison within 15 to 24 hours of arrest.

What Are New York Mugshot Records?

In New York, a suspect or criminal's mugshot is a high-quality photograph taken by law enforcement agencies. Usually, these records are beneficial for spreading information about a wanted person, identifying perpetrators with victims and witnesses, and using them during an investigation.

In this state, a mugshot typically includes not just one but three different angles of the subject's face and head.

How do you get a copy of a mugshot in New York? These records have always been freely given to news and media outlets in this state. In recent years, however, this state has implemented the New York Mugshot Law, which prohibits the release of these records by law enforcement agencies.

Nonetheless, this law permits the release of mugshots to the public and news organizations when it serves a specific purpose, or they make a valid request. 

So, if you want to get these records and have a reason allowed by state law, you can go to a law enforcement agency in person or online.

In this state, these agencies send these photos to people who ask for them at their physical addresses. They also put these records on their websites so anyone can look at them.

For example, you might find mugshots in a police agency's database of inmates or sex offenders.

How Long Does an Arrest Record Stay in New York?

The length of time an arrest record stays on file depends on various factors, including the outcome of the case and the type of record.

Generally, the arrest record will remain on file indefinitely if the case results in a conviction like a felony or a misdemeanor. If the case resulted in a dismissal or acquittal, the record typically stays on file for a minimum of ten years. 

However, those arrested for a crime may attempt to clean their records via expungement or a petition to seal the arrest record. 

Once cleared, the arrest or conviction is no longer considered to have happened. The individual is no longer required to reveal the record existence to prospective employers.

Unfortunately, there are limitations on record sealing or expungement since they only apply to certain charges.

How To Expunge an Arrest Record in New York?

New York is not one of the states that allow the expungement of arrest records. Instead, it seals the documents making them inaccessible to the public and, in some cases, even law enforcement.

However, the state has stringent sealing laws, and only certain minor offenses are eligible. According to section 160.59 of the state's Criminal Procedure Law, not all offenses, crimes, and judgments are suitable for sealing.

In this state, the following offenses are not eligible for sealing:

  • First-degree assault
  • First-degree burglary
  • First-degree criminal possession
  • Sales of restricted substances
  • Sex offenses that require SORA registration
  • Second-degree murder

On the other hand, the following crimes, among others, are eligible for sealing:

  • Petit larceny
  • Third-degree assault
  • Second-degree aggravated harassment
  • Theft of services
  • Third-degree robbery
  • Third-degree burglary
  • Third-degree criminal mischief
  • Fifth-degree criminal possession of the stolen property
  • Fourth-degree criminal mischief

Additionally, you must satisfy specific requirements to have a judge consider sealing your record. To qualify, you must meet the following criteria:

  • Your court application must be ten years after sentencing or release from prison.
  • There are no criminal charges against you now or in the future.
  • You have no recent previous convictions.
  • You have not obtained sealing of the limited number of judgments allowed.
  • You have no more than two convictions on your record. 

What Is the New York Sealing Process?

In this state, you can ask the courts to seal your New York Arrest Records by doing the following:

  • Get a copy of your record from the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services (NYDCJS) by giving them your name, social security number, date of birth, and other information that lets them know who you are.
  • Get an order from the court that issued the original arrest warrant, saying that your record is eligible for sealing.
  • Send the order to the NYDCJS along with a processing fee.

Once the court grant to seal your record, you won't have to say that you got arrested when you applied for housing, jobs, or other opportunities. 

How To Search New York Arrest Records?

There are numerous ways to search or get New York Arrest Records.

First, visit the NYDCJS website. It provides criminal history information to authorized agencies and individuals. To be eligible, you must have a legitimate reason for the request and provide identification, such as a driver's license or passport.

After that, complete the Fingerprint Card and mail it to the NYDCJS with the applicable fee. The NYDCJS will then process the request and provide you with a copy of the arrest record.

You can also search for New York Arrest Records through the online services of the New York State Office of Court Administration. It has an Online Direct Access page that allows you to search for criminal case information by name, date of birth, or case number.

Furthermore, each county in this state has its own sheriff's office, which is also in charge of keeping track of arrests. Send a written request with your name, birth date, and case number to get copies of these records. The sheriff's office will then look for the information in its files and give it to you if it is available.

Some sheriff's offices may charge a fee for doing the search and giving you the results, while others may provide you with the information for free. So, it's best to call the office ahead of time to find out if there are any fees.

You can find each county's sheriff's office's phone number and address on this page

Lastly, you can visit the local police department in the area where the arrest took place. Some police departments may provide arrest records upon request, although, similar to other agencies, they may charge a fee for the service.


Counties in New York

Jails and Prisons in New York

Kings County NY Sheriff's Jail210 Joralemon Street, Brooklyn, NY
Queensboro Correctional Facility47-04 Van Dam Street, Long Island City, NY
Queens Detention Facility182-22 150th Avenue, Jamaica, NY
Suffolk County NY DWI Facility100 Center Drive, Riverhead, NY
Suffolk County NY Youth Bureau - HauppaugeP.O. Box 6100, Hauppauge, NY
Suffolk County NY Riverhead Med/Max Security100 Center Drive South, Riverhead, NY
Nassau County NY Juvenile Detention Center61 Carmen Avenue, Westbury, NY