Article 28 of the Louisiana Criminal Code states that a magistrate must issue a warrant for the arrest of a person if he has probable cause to believe that this person will inevitably be party to a criminal act or may cause another individual grievous harm. The perquisite for the issue of arrest warrants is given in Article 202 wherein it is mentioned that an order for arrest should be released if an affidavit is filed by a person or a law enforcement agent in court.
Such an affidavit must include the name of the offender along with his last name and the name of the victim if there is one along with a description of the criminal offense that has occurred, the place and the date on which it took place. If the affidavit contains the electronic signature of the affiant it will be deemed as testimony given under oath and as such it should be enough for establishing probable cause. If this criminal incident has occurred in another parish, the magistrate is obligated to notify the district attorney of that particular geographical division of the state.
In the state of Louisiana, affidavits for the procurement of an arrest warrant can also be sent through facsimile and electronically. In case witness testimony is required for ascertaining probable cause, this may be taken over the phone. Even when the warrant has been granted, a copy of it can be faxed to the office of the county sheriff. This document will be considered a copy of the original warrant ad can be used for serving the judicial order.
The form of Louisiana active warrants
Apart from the name of the person to be arrested, his physical description and other personal identifiers, the warrant should also have information on the charge being brought against the offender. The original affidavit submitted in court will usually be attached to the copy of the judicial order and it will be clearly mentioned how the information that led to the establishment of probable cause was collected.
The warrant will have the signature of the magistrate on it and will have the name of the state and the county in which it was issued along with the date of release. A police officer need not have the warrant in hand when arresting the accused. However, he will have to notify the arrestee of the existence of such a court order under the provisions of which the detention is being effected.
Finding details on Louisiana active warrants
It can be quite tedious to get information on active warrants that are yet to be served from the local police or any official justice agency in the state of Louisiana. This information is withheld in the interest of public safety lest a civilian tries to detain a criminal and puts himself in harm’s way by doing so. However, while it can be hard to get information on the arrest warrants against a specific subject, it is relatively easy to find details on all arrest orders issued in a particular area or at least those that were granted against the more dangerous criminals.
You can find a list of the most wanted offenders in the area from the sheriff’s website of the following counties:
- Bossier Parish: http://www.bossiersheriff.com/most-wanted/
- East Carroll Parish: http://www.ecsheriff.com/wanted.html
- St. Tammany Parish: https://www.stpso.com/
For statewide records, you can visit http://www.corrections.state.la.us/fugitives/. The DOC website can also be used to find information including warrant and arrest records about criminals serving time in one of their incarceration facilities. Court records can also be used to hunt down arrest warrant issues. The official website of the Louisiana judiciary is at http://www.lasc.org/docket/default.asp. However, there is no provision for a database search on this page instead, you will have to contend yourself with the most recent court dockets.