In the state of North Carolina, an officer having a warrant for arrest in their possession may arrest the person named or described therein at any time and at any place within the officer’s territorial jurisdiction - according to the North Carolina General Assembly.
When police have an arrest warrant in the state of North Carolina they can, within the boundaries of the law, break down a door in order to make an arrest if the defendant fails to allow them to enter.
Law enforcement can make an arrest without a warrant if:
- They see the defendant commit a crime
- A witness points the defendant out to them and states they saw them commit a crime
- They find probable cause that indicates the defendant committed a crime
Even though police do not need a warrant to arrest a person if there is probable cause, a warrant gives police permission to arrest without justification.
With an arrest warrant law enforcement can make an arrest:
- Any time day or night
- Any place they apprehend the defendant
- Without warning
If you believe that you or somebody that you know has a warrant, we recommend that you do a North Carolina warrant search to know for sure so that you can take action on your own terms.
Outstanding Warrants in North Carolina
When somebody has an outstanding warrant, which is also commonly referred to as an active warrant , it means that the orders listed within the warrant have not yet been carried out. As long as a person has an outstanding arrest warrant, they are in danger of being arrested and taken to jail.
Warrants are official documents that are signed by a judge. Each document will have its own unique content that is specific to the case. Once the warrant is signed, law enforcement can act on it without delay.
Some warrants will order the arrest of an individual, some will order a summons be issued, and some will order that the officers conduct a search of the person and property of the subject. The type of warrant and the reason why the warrant was issued will determine how authorities will handle the situation.
If you learn that you have an outstanding warrant you can:
- Contact an attorney
- Contact the courthouse
- Turn yourself in
Once there is a warrant out for the arrest of an individual the only way to clear it is to go through the court process.
Types of Warrants in North Carolina
The United States’ legal system is full of terms and words that can render the people that try to understand them clueless. Although there are countless types of warrants that can be issued against a person or a business, the three most common warrants in North Carolina are:
- Bench warrants
- Arrest warrants
- Search warrants
Where bench warrants and arrest warrants give police permission to arrest and detain the person named in the warrant, a search warrant gives officers permission to search the person and property of the subject of the warrant.
Warrants are all based on the concept that a judge signs the document into action through the power of the court, but the way they are executed will differ depending on the circumstances and the orders within the warrant.
Warrant Records Search
Bench Warrants in North Carolina
Out of all the warrants that are issued in the state of North Carolina, bench warrants are among the most common. Since this type of warrant is written up and signed into action by a judge directly from the bench of the courtroom, there is no need for law enforcement to be involved with determining probable cause.
Most bench warrants are issued because the person named in the warrant did not appear for a court hearing on the day and time that they were appointed for. Failing to appear at a court date can get a defendant into trouble.
Other reasons that a judge will issue a bench warrant are anything that has to do with not complying with a court order.
- Failure to pay a fine on time
- Failure to show up at work project
- Failure to respond to a jury duty summons
Once a bench warrant has been issued towards a person, the police can take action towards bringing the defendant into police custody. Depending on the circumstances of the warrant there could be a bail amount set for the defendant, or there may not be an option for bail.
In any event, a bench warrant gives police permission to arrest the subject of the warrant at any time and at any place that they see fit.
Arrest Warrants in North Carolina
When a law enforcement officer or a district attorney approaches the judge with probable cause to imply that a person has committed a crime they can request an arrest warrant be issued upon the individual.
Most of the time when an arrest warrant is granted by a judge it is because the DA has already filed charges against the defendant.
An arrest warrant can be issued in cases where:
- The defendant was witnessed engaged in crime but fled the scene
- The defendant left evidence, such as fingerprints, at a crime scene
- An eyewitness identified the defendant as the suspect of a crime
Since an arrest warrant is a court order to take the person named in the warrant into the custody of the police there is little chance of the defendant being let go without going to jail.
Although the person may be arrested and taken to jail they can be released on bail or even their own recognizance and ordered to show up to court and face charges.
If a person is aware that they have an active arrest warrant they have the legal right to contact an attorney for advice on how to deal with the situation and clear their legal problems.
Search Warrants in North Carolina
If a judge signs a search warrant into activity it will not be considered public information until the search has been executed. The secrecy of the implementation of the warrant is so that the defendant does not have an opportunity to learn that the warrant is in place before the search happens.
Search warrants are granted so that law enforcement can have permission to search the property of the subject of the warrant in order to find evidence that will link them to a crime, or involement in criminal activity.
Police searching a person without permission or a search warrant in place can be a violation of the Fourth Amendment, which protects citizens from unreasonable and unlawful searches.
Reasons a judge will grant a search warrant can be:
- Probable cause that the defendant is selling drugs
- Probable cause that the defendant is in possession of illegal weapons
- Probable cause that the defendant possesses child porn
The search warrant has to be filled out in a manner that describes the person to be searched, the area that is to be searched, and what the officers will be searching for. Police have to follow the directions of the search warrant to a tee or else the search can be considered illegal and the evidence found can be suppressed.
If the police have a valid search warrant that includes all of the necessary information to properly execute the warrant the person named in the warrant must allow the officers to search. If the defendant refuses to allow a search they will be subject to legal action.
Check For Warrants Regularly
There is no better way to be aware of possible arrest warrants than by doing regular warrant searches. Peole get arrested for having warrants without even knowing that they exist all of the time. The best way to prevent an arrest and a trip to jail is to know that the warrants exist and handle them in your own way without the drama.
***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.