Police reports are obtainable from the police department that investigated the incident. After police investigate and close the case, they write up a report, file it and make the record public. Only after the investigation is completed can you request a copy of the report. Generally, there is a fee associated with obtaining a copy of the report, but this varies with the type of incident and the county requirements.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Easy
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Request a copy of your police report by contacting the police department that completed and investigated the incident by phone or in person.
Give the phone operator or desk clerk your name, the names of the people involved and listed in the police report and the date and location where the incident occurred. Some police departments may require you to come in person to fill out a request form for the report, but most can take the information over the phone.
Inquire as to how long the report will take to be ready. Some departments take up to one week to have police reports ready, but some may have the report ready in one day.
Send the required payment through the mail or pay the required fee in person at the police department. If mailing the payment, send along a letter telling the department what the money is for, the incident date and names included in the report. Give your name and mailing address. If paying in person, pay when you pick up the police report.
Tips and warnings
- Juvenile cases are not a matter of public record. The only way to get a copy of a juvenile police record is to have the juvenile himself, a parent or legal professional make a written request for the police report.
- If you only want to read your police report at the police department, there usually is no charge for this, but not all police departments may have the time for this or the resources for you to read the report.
- Police departments can deny you copies of police reports if the report is associated with another ongoing investigation.
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