How to Recant a Police Report

By Kelli Peacock Dunn

You were angry, frustrated and wanted justice, so you filed a complaint with law enforcement. But then you changed your mind, and now you want to withdraw the complaint. Recanting a police report can be accomplished, but it can also bring about some legal troubles.

Call or meet with the investigator who is handling your police report. If the case has not been assigned, contact the officer who took your initial report.

Explain the reason for recanting your report. If you are altering your statement, let him know how you would like to amend the information. If you want to completely withdraw the complaint, explain why.

Document new allegations. If you are changing your original report but want to continue pursuing charges, provide details of your new or amended allegations.

Sign your statement. If you provide an updated statement, read it before you sign it, then keep a copy.

Be prepared to face criminal charges. If you have filed false information, you might be charged. Seek the advice of an attorney.

About the Author

Kelli Peacock Dunn has been a news editor and photographer since 1998, working at a weekly newspaper in Northwest Florida. Her articles have also appeared in "Panama City Living" magazine and "The Lookout."