In Jefferson County, Missouri an active warrant is solely issued on the basis of the evidence collected in a case. However, this proof cannot be presented in court verbally nor will an arrest order be issued just because the investigating officers presume a person to be guilty of a criminal matter. In accordance with the Missouri state Criminal Code, a proper legal protocol has to be followed when seeking arrest warrants.
Such an order for detention can be issued only when a complaint is filed by the office of the sheriff, the state prosecution team or the victim. The complaint has to be made in writing and the affidavit submitted must contain all case related factors and evidence. This information is used to deliberate on the prevalence of a probable cause. In non-legal terms, probable cause is defined as the evidence that points to clear culpability. To put it simply, there must be enough proof in the matter for any layperson to believe that the criminal act was indeed the handy work of the accused.
Once such an order reaches the police, they are expected to serve it at once. However, in some cases this cannot be accomplished and the decree is saved for later use. Such a directive is known as an outstanding warrant and it can persist in the system for no less than 99 years, if need be.
When you initiate an inquiry into the arrest records of an individual through Jefferson County law enforcement or any other local justice agency, you will also be provided details on all arrest warrants against the subject even if such orders are bench warrants issued by the civil tribunals.
Apart from this, a warrant search will also bring back details on convictions, sentencing and incarceration. The state agencies that can be contacted for this information are:
- The sheriff: PO Box 100, Hillsboro, Missouri 63050
- The magistrate: 729 Maple Street, Hillsboro, MO 63050-4317
- The clerk of court: Mailing and physical addresses as listed above
To find a list of Jefferson County's most wanted, try the website of the sheriff at http://www.jcsd.org/most.htm.
Only about 11% cases of the estimated 4100 criminal complaints filed in Jefferson County, MO can be categorized as violent. This may not seem particularly alarming at first given the fact that only about 450 occurrences of violent crime are reported in the county per annum. However, between 1999 and 2008, the rate of both violent criminal incidents and overall crime has almost doubled and this is what has got residents concerned.