Search Massachusetts Arrest Records
Searching for arrest records in Barnstable County in the state of Massachusetts
Whenever a person is arrested in Barnstable County, the state of Massachusetts or anywhere in the US, then an arrest record is created for that incident. Of course, just because a person is arrested by the police, it does not necessarily mean they have done anything wrong; once arrested they could be released without charge, found not guilty in the federal, state or district court, or even have their conviction quashed on appeal. Finding out that someone you know or are thinking of employing has an arrest record simply means that at one time in their life, the police felt they had enough evidence to detain them in regards to a particular crime or incident. They may even have been arrested simply as a witness to something that happened! Employers in particular should be careful that they do not use information such as arrest records on their own to discriminate against an existing or potential employee without looking into the incident further.
If you know that the person you are searching for has lived in Barnstable County in the state of Massachusetts all their lives, then searching for any documents relating to their past is going to be much easier. Documents relating to arrest records are maintained either by the police or by the courts, if the case ended up going to trial. The county courthouses in Barnstable County will have archives of court documents, including arrest records, many of which will be on computer databases to make searching much easier. The staff at these courthouses will be able to help you get your search started, and can even carry out a search on your behalf if you live a long way from Barnstable County or the state of Massachusetts. Just send them a request by mail or email, along with the standard fee that usually applies. Of course, the staff here has lots of other things to do, so you may end up waiting quite a while for your search results to be returned.
It may be quicker for you to search online, either on the police or court websites if they have a search facility, or on a commercial website that collects together information on arrest records in Barnstable County from many different sources. These sites often also offer national data, which can be useful if you are not sure that the person you’re searching for has lived in Barnstable County or the state of Massachusetts all their lives. You simply have to input what information you have about the person, such as name, date of birth, previous addresses, and if they have ever been arrested, you will get a list of results. There may be limits as to exactly what information you can see, depending on some of the details of the arrest or when it took place, and you might have to pay these sites a fee in order to see this extra information, but most will charge you nothing if you get no “hits” on the name you are searching for.
The most likely reasons that you would want to search for arrest records in Barnstable County in the state of Massachusetts are to check up on a new partner before you move in with him or her or before you marry them, to look into the background of current or potential employees or even as a part of your research into your family tree. In the first two cases, be careful not to jump to conclusions – an arrest record does not mean the person was guilty. Employers may be restricted as to the kinds of background searches they are allowed to carry out on employees without their permission, and they can get into trouble themselves if they act upon information like this when it is not allowed. If you are an employer in Barnstable County wanting to carry out this kind of background check on your employees, the staff at the local courthouse will be able to tell you what information you are actually allowed to access. Arrest records contain a lot of personal information, which is why they are useful to genealogists. No-one wants to find out that their ancestors were criminals, but if it helps to piece together where they lived or who their relatives were, then any documents of this kind can help. Of course, more historic documents in Barnstable County and throughout the state of Massachusetts might not yet have been transferred to computer systems, meaning you will just have to search through the older, paper files in the courthouse archives. These will be indexed, and the courthouse staff will be able to offer you some advice and tips to get you started.