Whatever the reason for your inquiry, there are several ways to search for warrants issued by Colorado courts. How to go about it depends on where the warrant was issued. In some jurisdictions, local law enforcement officials provide the information online in a searchable database. Many police agencies share the warrant information with a national crime database, which your local police department can then access. Other locations require you to ask directly.
Visit Your Local Police Department
For an individual who wants to inquire if a warrant exists for him, appearing in person at the local police station is a quick way to find out. Law enforcement officials use the state database maintained by the Colorado Bureau of Investigation and the national database maintained by the FBI to check for outstanding warrants across the state.
Online Examples From Around the State
If you would prefer to check online first for warrants in Colorado, try the websites of local law enforcement officials in the jurisdiction where the warrant was issued. Some of the sites will only advise you on ways to check. For example, if you missed a court date in Colorado Springs, the city recommends that you call 719-385-6153 for further information – including what, if any, bail charges have been imposed.
Other jurisdictions provide the details online. For example, the Denver County Court allows you to search by name and date of birth for outstanding warrants and provides instructions on how to clear a civil warrant. The Weld County Sheriff's office also has a database you can search by name.
Jefferson County law enforcement officials publish a weekly list of the "most wanted" in the jurisdiction that users can download and view, whereas Pueblo County maintains an online warrant list of several thousand names, including those wanted for minor offenses. Thus, how to search depends on the area.
Search the National Database
The FBI maintains an online database users can search for outstanding warrants. Besides gender and types of crime, you can specify a broad search for wanted individuals with a Colorado connection. This database contains information about persons wanted for the most serious crimes and does not return results for minor offenses, such as traffic violations and other misdemeanors.
Statute of Limitations
Some warrants in Colorado become invalid due to the statute of limitations on the time courts have to begin legal proceedings against people accused of specific crimes. In the Colorado Revised Statutes, specifically C.R.S. 16-5-401, particular offenses and the associated statutes of limitations are listed. For misdemeanor charges, the limitations range from six months for petty offenses, to one year for minor traffic violations, to five years for vehicular homicide. These limitations can be extended for up to five years for persons who leave the state.
Some felonies carry no statute of limitations on prosecution. These include forgery, treason, kidnapping, any sex crime against a child and murder.
Vicki A Benge began writing professionally in 1984 as a newspaper reporter. A small-business owner since 1999, Benge has worked as a licensed insurance agent and has more than 20 years experience in income tax preparation for businesses and individuals. Her business and finance articles can be found on the websites of "The Arizona Republic," "Houston Chronicle," The Motley Fool, "San Francisco Chronicle," and Zacks, among others.