Hawaii Warrant Searches

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In the state of Hawaii, an officer need not have the arrest warrant in their possession at the time of the arrest. In the event that there is no physical warrant available, the officer must inform the defendant that a warrant has been issued for their arrest and the charges that the suspect is accused of.

Arrest warrants are usually issued:

  • After the DA has officially filed charges
  • When police present probable cause of criminal activity to a judge
  • When an individual is indicted

When there is an arrest warrant out for a person the police have total authority to locate the person named in the warrant, place them in restraints, and bring them to jail. In most cases involving an arrest warrant, the police that arrests an individual will not cite the person and tell them to show up in court. Instead, they will place the suspect under arrest, book them into jail, then allow the court to decide whether or not they will allow them bail or release them on their own recognizance.

If you believe that you or somebody that you know has an active arrest warrant, we recommend that you do a Hawaii warrant search to know for sure so that you can take action on your own terms.

Active Warrants in the State of Hawaii

Having an active warrant in the State of Hawaii means that a judge or magistrate has signed a court-ordered action to take place against an individual for the purpose of the court. Depending on the severity of the grounds for the warrant and the type of warrant that it is, law enforcement may - or may not - act aggressively to pursue the defendant named in the warrant.

Not all warrants mean that the defendant will automatically go to jail, in some cases the warrant will be so that the officers can conduct a search to look for evidence that will prove that an individual was involved in unlawful activities.

When an officer deals with a warrant, depending on the type of warrant that is issued they can:

  • Search the subject of the warrant’s person or property
  • Arrest the subject of the warrant on sight
  • Issue a summons for the suspect to appear in court

The one thing that all types of warrants have in common is that they are issued and signed by a judge or a magistrate in a court of law. All warrants will differ in content because each situation that they stem from is unique.

Types of Warrants in Hawaii

Although there are various types of warrants in Hawaii such as grand jury, parole revocation, probation, juvenile, traffic, felony, and misdemeanor warrants, there are three basic types of warrants that all warrants are formed out of:

  • Bench warrants
  • Arrest warrants
  • Search warrants

Each of these types of warrants has its own set of values that differentiate one from the other. Although they are all three legal documents that are issued under the authority of a judge, the focus of each one will vary.

Bench Warrants in Hawaii

The reason why this type of warrant is deemed a ”bench warrant” is that when they are created they are written up and signed by a judge directly from the ”bench” of the courtroom. Where other types of warrants will require at least one other department to set things into motion, a bench warrant is issued solely from the judge.

When a bench warrant is issued it is due to the negligence of an individual in terms of satisfying a demand of the court. Bench warrants can be the result of:

  • Failure to appear at an appointed court date
  • Failure to comply with a court order
  • Failure to comply with an order to show up for jury duty

As soon as a bench warrant is issued law enforcement officers can apprehend and arrest the person named on the warrant at any time and at any place.

Arrest Warrants in Hawaii

An arrest warrant in Hawaii is similar to a bench warrant in terms that it allows officers to arrest, detain, and incarcerate an individual. Once an arrest warrant is signed into action police have permission to go as far as to break down the door of a residence in order to acquire the person named on the warrant.

It is important to understand that police do not always need an arrest warrant to arrest a citizen. Once law enforcement ascertains that there is a probability that the person in question is committing a crime, or has committed a crime they can legally place the person under arrest.

Police don’t need an arrest warrant to arrest a person when:

  • The police witness the person in the process of a crime
  • There is probable cause to implicate the person is involved in a crime
  • The police see a person fleeing from the scene of a crime

An arrest warrant can be initiated in a couple of different ways:

  • Police can request an arrest warrant from the judge
  • The district attorney can request an arrest warrant after filing charges

In some instances, the district attorney will not have filed charges against an individual, but the police are concerned that the individual will commit more crimes and flee. When there is a weekend or a holiday break coming up, police can request that a judge grant an arrest warrant so that authorities do not have to wait for the courthouse to open up in order to make an arrest.

Search Warrants in Hawaii

When there is a legal search warrant in place officers have the authority to search the person and the property of the individual that is named in the warrant.

Although the Fourth Amendmentis in place so that citizens can be protected from unreasonable search and seizures by law enforcement officers, the factor of public safety can play a major role in the practices of the police.

Even though police can argue that they had probable cause that the person they searched was a danger to public safety, they need enough evidence to get past clever defense attorneys that can get evidence thrown out of court based on illegal search practices.

When there is a search warrant in place officers can:

  • Search the person and the property of the person named in the warrant
  • Seek to discover evidence that might incriminate the person
  • Seize property and hold it as evidence

When officers conduct a search while in the process of executing a search warrant they have to adhere to the laws that govern the area that they are searching as well as adhere to the stipulations that are stated in the warrant.

If officers search an area that is not listed on the warrant, it is considered an illegal search, and any evidence found is subject to exclusion from the case.

Since a search warrant will not become public record until after it is executed, it is not likely that a person will discover its existence until after they have been searched. In other words, a search warrant is formulated and put together discreetly and in a way that the person named in the warrant will not likely have any idea that it is being created. This way, the suspect will not be able to relocate incriminating evidence.

Why Perform Regular Warrant Searches?

If you or somebody that you care about has an active warrant out for their arrest there is a good chance that you will not be aware of it until you are handcuffed in the back of a police car. When you are aware that you have a warrant you have an opportunity to contact an attorney and get help with the situation. Regular warrant searches provide you with the type of knowledge that could ultimately keep you out of jail and help you to deal with your legal issues on your own terms.

***Regardless of which state you live in it is always wise to contact an attorney for any questions that you may have when it comes to warrant laws or any other legal concerns. The content found on this website is only for informational purposes and is not to be mistaken for legal advice.