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North Dakota Arrest Records

North Dakota Arrest Records are legal documents that showcase the apprehension and detainment of individuals suspected of committing crimes within the state. Typically created by local law enforcement agencies, these records only indicate suspicion of a crime and do not prove an individual's guilt.

The contents of arrest records may vary across jurisdictions. Still, in North Dakota, they typically include the arrested individual's name, mugshot, fingerprints, date of birth, and physical description. These records also show details about the alleged offense, date and location, name of the officer that made the arrest, and the arresting agency.

The North Dakota Sunshine Laws govern the accessibility of arrest records in North Dakota. These laws make arrest records publicly accessible, allowing individuals to request and review information about arrests made throughout the state.

In North Dakota, the accessibility of these records allows individuals and organizations to conduct thorough background checks on potential employees, tenants, or business partners. By accessing this information, employers and landlords can make informed decisions regarding the character and trustworthiness of individuals they may be considering for various positions.

Additionally, law enforcement agencies, attorneys, and court officials rely on arrest records to gather evidence, establish behavior patterns, and support their cases during legal proceedings.

However, not all information about an arrest record in North Dakota is available to the public. Specific details, such as the names of juvenile offenders, may be redacted before the release of the documents. Moreover, sealed or expunged arrest records are exclusively accessible to court officials and law enforcement agencies.

What Laws Govern Arrests in North Dakota?

When it comes to maintaining law and order, having a comprehensive set of legal provisions is crucial for guiding and regulating arrests. In North Dakota, the state government has established rules that specifically dictate the procedures and parameters surrounding arrests.

The primary law governing arrests in North Dakota is Chapter 29-06 of the North Dakota Century Code (NDCC). According to this law, arrests within the state can be conducted by either a peace officer with or without a warrant or by a private individual.

In the case of a warranted arrest, a peace officer in North Dakota must inform the defendant about the arrest and present the warrant as evidence. Once the intention to arrest has been communicated, the officer may employ any necessary methods to carry out the arrest.

However, suppose an arrest is made without a warrant. In that case, a peace officer must have sufficient evidence to reasonably believe that the individual has committed a felony or misdemeanor or that the offense was committed in their presence.

In addition to peace officers, private citizens in North Dakota also have the authority to effectuate arrests under certain circumstances. Per section 29-06-20 of the NDCC, a private citizen may arrest an individual who has committed or tried to commit a public offense in their presence. 

They may also conduct an arrest for a felony committed elsewhere, provided they have reasonable grounds to believe the detained individual is guilty of an offense. However, when making an arrest, a private citizen must clearly articulate to the arrestee the purpose and rationale behind the apprehension.

Moreover, there are certain circumstances in which out-of-state officers and bystanders are also authorized to make arrests in North Dakota. It includes situations where they are in fresh pursuit of a suspect who crosses state lines or when an individual is involved in a breach of the peace.

What Is the Arrest Booking Process in North Dakota?

The arrest booking process is a crucial stage in the criminal justice system after an apprehension in North Dakota. Booking refers to the post-arrest procedures undertaken at a police station or detention facility to prepare a suspect for potential incarceration.

In North Dakota, when an individual gets arrested, a law enforcement officer will transport them  to the nearest law enforcement facility to complete the booking process, which includes the following:

Identification and Documentation

Upon arrival at the detention facility, the apprehending law enforcement officer will document the suspect's personal information, including their full name, date of birth, and address. The officer will also obtain the arrestee's fingerprints and mugshot for identification.

Inventory of Personal Belongings

Once the law enforcement officer has gathered the arrestee's personal information, they will collect their personal belongings, including their clothing, jewelry, and any other items they had on them at the time of the arrest. These belongings are securely stored until they can be returned upon release or as authorized by the court.

Preliminary Health Screening

As part of the booking process, medical staff will conduct a preliminary health assessment of the suspect to ensure their well-being and that of other detainees. Any immediate medical issues are evaluated and addressed.

Criminal History and Warrants Check

Law enforcement officers in North Dakota will also thoroughly examine the arrestee's criminal history and any outstanding warrants by utilizing relevant databases. This step aids in determining the individual's risk level and provides essential information for subsequent legal proceedings.

Placement in Detention

Once the initial booking procedures are completed, the law enforcement officers allocate the individual to a designated area within the detention facility.

What Happens After the Arrest Booking Process in North Dakota?

After being booked into a detention facility in North Dakota, arrestees undergo further case processing as they enter the legal system. While specific procedures may vary by jurisdiction, the post-arrest process in North Dakota typically comprises the following stages:

Initial Appearance and Bail Determination

In North Dakota, after the booking process, law enforcement officers present the arrested individual before a judge for an initial appearance. During this proceeding, the judge evaluates whether the detained defendant is eligible for bail.

When making a bail determination, the judge considers various factors, including the severity of the criminal charges, the assessed risk that the defendant may attempt to flee or evade prosecution, and considerations related to public safety. Once granted, the judge will establish the appropriate monetary amount and special release conditions.

Pretrial Motions and Discovery

After the initial court appearance, the prosecution and defense may engage in pretrial motions. These motions can involve requests to suppress evidence, dismiss charges, or present other legal arguments. Additionally, both sides have the right to access relevant information and evidence through discovery, which allows them to build their cases.

Plea Bargaining

In some instances, the prosecution and defense may enter into plea bargaining. It involves negotiations between the parties to reach a mutually acceptable agreement. The suspect may plead guilty to a lesser charge, while the prosecution secures a conviction without going to trial. 

Plea bargaining can expedite the legal process and potentially result in a more favorable outcome for both parties.


The case continues to trial if the defendant pleads not guilty or no agreement is reached through plea bargaining. During this step, the prosecution presents evidence and witnesses to prove the defendant's guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. A jury or judge then determines the individual's innocence or guilt.


A separate sentencing hearing occurs if the individual pleads guilty. During this hearing, the court examines various aspects, such as the type of crime and the individual's criminal history, to determine a suitable sentence. The sentence may include imprisonment, penalties, community service, or probation. 

The process and timeline of the legal proceedings after an arrest in North Dakota may vary depending on the specific circumstances of each criminal case and the policies followed in the relevant judicial district. 

As a result, arrestees should promptly seek the guidance and representation of a qualified legal professional to receive advice and assistance tailored to their unique situation.

What Are North Dakota Mugshot Records?

Mugshot records in North Dakota are official photographs law enforcement agencies take during an individual's apprehension. These records typically contain front and side view photos of the arrested person and apprehension information.

In North Dakota, mugshot records are public information as they are part of the North Dakota Arrest Records. However, their accessibility and availability may vary across jurisdictions.

There are different ways to obtain mugshot records in North Dakota. The most convenient way is through law enforcement agencies' online databases.

One way to look for mugshot records is using the Resident Lookup tool available through the North Dakota Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (NDDOCR).

To use this tool, individuals must provide the last name or the starting letters of the name of the individual they wish to search. If there is a match, it will display the arrest details along with mugshots. 

However, this online database only provides information on incarcerated inmates in an NDDOCR facility. Detainees in other facilities will not appear in this database.

Another method to obtain mugshot records in North Dakota is through the state's Sex Offender Registry. On this database, seekers may search using their name or location. Once they click the search button, they will see a list of offenders in the state along with details such as personal information, case information, physical descriptors, and mugshot.

In North Dakota, these records contain sensitive information about individuals and their involvement in the criminal justice system. Therefore, individuals who obtain these records should exercise responsibility in using the data to ensure fair treatment for those involved.

How Long Does an Arrest Record Stay in North Dakota?

North Dakota Arrest Records typically remain on file for seven years after an arrest, mainly if the accused is found not guilty. Despite this, the agency responsible for the arrest in the state will maintain these records indefinitely on its database.

However, for arrests not resulting in convictions, North Dakota law provides individuals with specific options to prevent public access to their records.

In North Dakota, individuals can request the sealing of arrest records if the charges are dismissed or found not guilty. Sealing an arrest record keeps it confidential and inaccessible to the public.

Alternatively, individuals can pursue expungement through the courts, which is a more comprehensive method of removing an arrest record by completely removing it from all official sources.

Nonetheless, even if an arrest record is sealed or expunged, law enforcement agencies still retain these records within their files. While they are not readily available to the public, authorized personnel may access them for specific purposes, such as ongoing investigations or background checks related to particular positions or licenses.

How To Expunge an Arrest Record in North Dakota

Any individual detained and charged with a criminal offense in North Dakota may face considerable problems in employment, housing, and education. Fortunately, North Dakota state law allows individuals to expunge their arrest records under specific conditions.

In North Dakota, expungement of an arrest record is only possible in some instances. This legal process is only available to individuals with dismissed charges, arrests that did not result in felony charges within one year, or misdemeanor convictions.

If an individual determines they meet the expungement requirements, they can submit a petition to the court. 

This petition must include the requestor's full name, date of birth, address, and social security number. It must also include documentation of the requestor's qualifications and an official copy of their arrest record from the North Dakota Bureau of Criminal Investigation (NDBCI).

Upon receipt of these documents, the court will schedule a hearing before a judge to assess whether the arrest record is eligible for expungement. If granted, the court will issue a court order to the NDBCI, prompting them to make the necessary revisions to their records.

Apart from expungement, North Dakota allows the sealing of arrest records that have been dismissed. It also enables individuals convicted of a felony to seal their records after five years from the date of arrest, while those convicted of a misdemeanor may seal their records after three years. 

Once the court grants the petition, it will seal the documents, allowing individuals to state they have no convictions.

However, even after the sealing or expungement of an arrest record, it may still be visible in background checks performed by potential employers or landlords. Nonetheless, such documents may indicate that the individual has undergone rehabilitation and no longer poses a threat to society.

How To Search North Dakota Arrest Records

When an individual needs to search North Dakota Arrest Records, they can use several methods to access this information.

One of the efficient ways to access arrest records in North Dakota is through the NDBCI. Interested parties can access arrest records by completing a Request for Criminal History Record Information form.

After completing the form, mail it with the required documentation and appropriate payment to the NDBCI. In general, the NDBCI usually provides a response to these requests within a timeframe of 7 to 10 business days.

In addition to the NDBCI, the North Dakota Court System (NDCS) provides the Courts Records Inquiry service. This database allows individuals to search for arrest records and other court-related information within the state.

To utilize this system, one must select the location and choose the "Criminal/Traffic" option. There, they will find a form that requires completion. After entering the required information in the form, an individual can initiate the search by clicking the "Search" button to prompt the system's search process.

Lastly, individuals can contact the county Sheriff's Office. These agencies maintain law enforcement records within their jurisdiction, including arrest records.

To access a specific record, requesters must provide relevant details about the arrest and follow the office's specific procedure, including completing a request form and paying a fee. The county Sheriff's Office will then process the request, and individuals should await a response within a reasonable timeframe.


Counties in North Dakota

Jails and Prisons in North Dakota

Cass County ND Jail450 34th Street South, Fargo, ND
Missouri River Correctional Center1800 48th Avenue S.W., Bismarck, ND
North Dakota State Penitentiary3100 Railroad Avenue, PO Box 5521, Bismarck, ND
Burleigh County ND Detention Center4000 Apple Creek Road, Bismarck, ND
Ward County ND Detention Center315 SE Third St., P.O. Box 907, Minot, ND
Ward County ND Juvenile Detention Center315 3rd Street SE, PO Box 907, Minot, ND
North Dakota Youth Correctional Center701 16th Ave SW, Mandan, ND
Morton County ND Correctional Center205 1st Avenue NW, Mandan, ND
Stark County ND Jail66 Museum Drive West, PO Box 130, Dickinson, ND
Dakota Horizons Juvenile Detention66 Museum Drive, Dickinson, ND