What’s In A Police Report
At the scene of the car accident, if you pay close attention you may notice the investigating officer inspecting vehicles, talking to people, measuring distances, writing notes, and taking photographs. The officer is taking some or all of these steps in preparation for drafting the police report. In short, the police report is a summary of the police officer’s investigation of the accident. The report will often contain some or all of the following information:
- approximate date, time, and location of the collision
- identifying information for parties involved in the car accident, including names, addresses, phone numbers, and insurance information
- identifying information for witnesses
- statements from the parties and witnesses
- citations and/or violations of law, and
- opinions as to cause of the collision and/or a fault determination.
What You Need For Request A Crash Report
Anyone can request a crash report as long as the required information can be provided.
If a vehicle crash occurred in Massachusetts and has been filed and processed by the Registry of Motor Vehicles , you can request either a standard or a certified copy of the police crash report. Please wait at least 4 weeks after the crash before requesting a report.
You will need to pay a fee for the crash report. The fee is non-refundable even if a report is not found.
Requesting A Police Report In Person
1. Gather the required materials.
Bring with you a form of identification like a drivers license or passport. If you are making the request on behalf of someone else, you will need to have a notarized letter with you. Most agencies require a small request fee. If you were directly involved in the incident whether as a victim, witness, or defendant you may receive a verification slip from the authorities to let you know that a police report has been filed. Bring this slip with you to exchange for the police report.
2. Visit the Records and Identification Division of the police department.
The Records and Identification Division may have exclusive hours throughout the day that are not your typical business hours, so be sure to verify online. They will ask you for your information, as well as basic information about the case. Then, they will take your payment to cover the request fee.
3. Retrieve the copy of your police report.
In some areas, you may have to pick up a copy of the police report in person, but some agencies may mail it directly to you. Either way, expect to pay a per-page fee for the copy of the report. Reports typically cost a total of $50 to $150.
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Do You Need A Copy Of A Police Report
Using the links below, download a copy of the request form. Submit the completed form either by mail or by hand delivery to:
Long Beach Police Department Long Beach, CA 90802 ATTN: RECORDS DIVISION
The processing time for your report will vary depending on the incident. On average, the turn around time for your report will be three weeks.
- Application For Release of Traffic Collision And/Or Crime Report / Incident Information Long Beach Police Department will charge a $23.00 fee for copies of reports. The fee will be charged for copies of all types of reports: incident reports, arrest reports, traffic collision reports and information-only reports. Victims will be exempt from the report request fee.
- Additional Property Loss Form
- Civil Harassment Restraining Order Information
Why Do I Need A Record Check
A police record check is a tool to help employers or other agencies determine an applicant’s suitability for certain types of opportunities. Record checks are just one tool available and can be used in addition to interviews, reference checks and verification of credentials/licences.
Agencies can only request one type of record check from an applicant specific to the opportunity. They are not permitted to ask applicants for any additional police records.
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You Cannot File A Report Online If
- A threat was made or violence was used during the incident. If you are in immediate danger, please dial 911. If you are no longer in danger, please call us at 613-236-1222, extension 7300.
- Evidence was left on the scene such as, but not limited to blood, tools, clothes or any item related to the incident. Please call 613-236-1222, extension 7300 to file a report.
- The incident being reported did not happen in Ottawa. Please contact the police service in the city where the incident happened to file a report.
- The stolen property is a passport
- The property lost is a cell phone, licence plate, bank card or government issued identification, with or without a serial number. Please contact your service provider to get a replacement.
Locating An Incident Or Offense Report
To locate an incident or offense report, you will need:
- Victims last name
- Your report number
- The report date
Access your report online. If you have technical issues call any time at 866-495-4206, option 5.
If you do not know your incident report number, you can email us. We will look up your information and email it back to you.
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Acceptable Pieces Of Identification:
- Driver’s licence
- Foreign driver’s licence
- Valid student identity card from a Canadian or foreign institute
- Firearms Acquisition Certificate
- Canadian National Institute for the Blind identification card
- Federal, provincial or municipal identification card
- Military Family Identification
- Fishing, boating or hunting licence
- Vehicle ownership
- One piece of non-photo identification, which provides both the name and date of birth of an individual
How Do I Get A Copy Of A Police Report
Police investigations may seem secretive, but did you know you can get your hands on a copy of an official police report? Whether youve been in a car accident, youve witnessed a crime, or you simply want to know about an incident that happened in your jurisdiction, there are steps you can take to request access to police reports.
The exact process may vary by jurisdiction, but it is generally the same across the country. Agencies have different policies for releasing sensitive information that is in police reports, so be sure to check with your local police department to confirm how they handle requests. As you are researching, you may find the request titled a Freedom of Information Request or a Public Access Request. Different areas use varying language, but they both mean the same thing and are referring to the Freedom of Information Act , which makes it entirely legal for citizens to request certain government information.
Reports will include details of the incident, where it took place, who was involved, witnesses, and much more essentially, it is anything that is even remotely relevant to the case. But keep in mind, you will not be able to receive a copy of a police report until after the police investigation has been closed.
So, how do you get a copy of this information? Check out the steps below.
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What Do I Do If I Have Problems Or Am Not Able To Complete An Online Crime Report
You may be able to file your report by phone by calling police communications at 408-277-8900 Monday through Friday, from Noon to 4:00PM or, you may visit the police administration building and make your report to an officer at the information desk.
Get A Copy Of Your Police Records
You have the right to ask for a copy of records the police have about you. This is called a subject access request.
You might need a subject access request if you move to another country.
A subject access request has records from:
- police forces in England, Wales, Northern Ireland, Jersey and the Isle of Man
- the British Transport Police
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How To Obtain A Police Report
This article was co-authored by Saul Jaeger, MS. Saul Jaeger is a Police Officer and Captain of the Mountain View, California Police Department . Saul has over 17 years of experience as a patrol officer, field training officer, traffic officer, detective, hostage negotiator, and as the traffic units sergeant and Public Information Officer for the MVPD. At the MVPD, in addition to commanding the Field Operations Division, Saul has also led the Communications Center and the Crisis Negotiation Team. He earned an MS in Emergency Services Management from the California State University, Long Beach in 2008 and a BS in Administration of Justice from the University of Phoenix in 2006. He also earned a Corporate Innovation LEAD Certificate from the Stanford University Graduate School of Business in 2018. This article has been viewed 630,245 times.
A police report is a document police officers create after an arrest, accident, or investigation. It explains what happened, details evidence, and provides witness statements and other details. Because these reports are often used in court appearances, settlements, and insurance investigations, having a copy might be very useful for you. Whether they ask you to submit your request in person, via mail, or online, all police departments will provide you with a copy of your police report.
Get A Copy Of A Public Safety Report
You can get copies of public safety records from the Department of Records. This includes:
- Traffic accident reports .
- Police incident or offense reports.
- Fire reports.
- Emergency medical services reports.
- Police record checks.
- Letters of good conduct.
Some reports may contain confidential information and are not available to everyone. See the applications to learn about who can apply.
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How Can I Get A Police Clearance Letter For Immigration Purposes
The Los Angeles Police Department does not provide police clearance letters for the purposes of immigration to the United States or for employment background purposes. If the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services asks for a clearance letter after you have been fingerprinted, please contact the Los Angeles County Sherriffs Office at 12440 East Imperial Highway, Norwalk, CA 90650 Phone No.: 345-4441.How do I find information for my academic research project?
The LAPD is unable to provide routine assistance with academic research matters due to the large number of requests the Department receives and the limited budget we have to process these requests.
At the discretion of the Chief of Police, the Department does occasionally participate in research projects which are of direct benefit to the City and the people of Los Angeles. If you believe that your request falls under this category, we encourage you to forward your inquiry in writing for further evaluation and review.
You may send your written request to:
Los Angeles Police DepartmentOffice of the Chief of Police100 West 1st Street
What Type Of Information And Data Is Contained In A Police Report
The following are types of data and information that may be included in a police report. Please note that there is no universal police report. Information will vary from department to department.
- Identifying information for all parties involved in the incident, including full name, address, phone number, date of birth, social security numbers, driver license numbers
- Date of the occurrence or incident
- Location of the occurrence or incident
- The officers name and ID number
- The names of other officers who were present
- Diagrams or drawings of the scene
- The names of witnesses and their statements
- Reference number
The law enforcement case file may also contain motor vehicle information, as well as specific details of the incident and any evidence associated with the case.
Examples of police reports may include but are not limited to domestic disputes, traffic accidents, thefts, fraud, assault, burglaries, and stalking incidents. Other information that may be available includes crime surveys, crime statistics, calls for service, weather information, and traffic accident surveys.
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Third Parties Obtaining Reports
Sometimes third parties who were not involved in the actions mentioned in police reports might want copies of them. In these instances, most states will only allow third parties to obtain copies of police reports if the matters enclosed within the reports have already been closed. However, some states may allow third parties to obtain copies of police reports even when the cases are pending. Generally, third parties must know the case number of the reports that they want and must go to the county clerks office where the police report was filed to obtain a copy of the reports. There is usually a fee for the reports to be printed as well.
The process of obtaining copies of police reports is slightly different for different groups of people. However, they typically are not difficult to obtain, no matter who wants them.
How Do I Obtain A Police Report
In most cases the public portion of police reports can be obtained from the APD Incident Report Database. Please read the Incident Report Database instructions on how to obtain the report. Make sure to enter the case number exactly how it is shown in the instructions.
For information about purchasing a copy of the public portion of a police report contact the Austin Police Department Report Sales Unit at 974-5499. Reports can be purchased at the Main Police Headquarters, located at 715 E 8th Street. Reports are 10 cents a page and only the public portion is available for purchase from the report sales office. This is the same report that can be obtained from visiting the APD Incident Report Database. Report Sales new hours of operation are Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.
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How To Get A Copy Of A Police Report
A police report is generated by the investigating officer who responds to a request for assistance at the scene of a car accident. The police report is a summary of information regarding the crashusually containing facts related to the accident and opinions of the investigating officer.
There are two ways to obtain a police report. One way will cost you money, the other probably will not. To obtain a paid copy of the police report, you need to request a copy from the local law enforcement office that drafted the report. Before leaving the scene of the crash, the investigating officer typically will hand you a receipt with the identification number for the police report. Call the traffic division of the local law enforcement agency that responded to the scene of the car accident, pay the administrative fee , and you should have no problem obtaining a copy.
If you do not have or do not know the identification number for the police report, you can provide the date, time, and location of the car accident, along with your name, to assist in locating the report.
To obtain a free copy of the police report, you can ask the insurance adjuster who is handling your claim if they requested the report, and ask for a copy.
Regardless of how you obtain the police report, it may take a few weeks for the investigating officer to complete the report, and for it to become available.
Why Police Reports Matter
Police reports are public records and in some states they may be viewable by just about anybody. Usually there are restrictions on how those records can be used, particularly by employers, landlords, and financial institutions. As already mentioned, police reports are particularly usefuland they may even be necessarywhen filing a claim with your insurer. The contents of a police report are important, so you need to make sure that any police report pertaining to you is accurate and does not cast you in an unnecessarily bad light.
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How Long Will It Take To Get A Copy Of A Report Once It Is Requested
- In most cases, if you attend in person to obtain a report, it will be prepared while you wait. If the report is incomplete , it will be released to you when it is completed. There may be an additional wait time for archived reports.
- Requests by mail will be responded to by mail as promptly as possible.
How To Access Your Police
Members of the public have the right to request records containing their personal information from the Ontario Provincial Police or a municipal police service. Individuals who make these requests may have, for example, played a role in a suspected offence, been involved in a call for service or some other police-attended incident or had a relative who died in circumstances that led to the involvement of a police service.
Someone else, such as a lawyer or other person acting on your behalf, may make the request for you, or you may do so yourself. You may file a request by submitting a form and paying a fee, either by mail or in person.
Commonly requested records include:
- officers notes and
- police-related 911 calls.
Many people think that they cannot request a police officers notes, but a police notebook is generally in the custody or control of the police service and is subject to freedom of information requests.
Requesting information from a police service follows the same process as asking for records from other types of government institutions. However, the nature of police-held information means that frequently some of these records or some passages within these records are exempt from disclosure under Ontarios access to information legislation.
In all cases, if you disagree with a police services decision to deny your access request in whole or part, you may file an appeal with our office.
This post is also available in: French
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