Mark Twain purportedly once said, “Lies, damned lies and statistics.” Statistics are often accused, but in Dubuque County, Iowa, an average of almost three thousand crimes occur per year, and nearly 10 percent of those crimes are classified as violent crimes.
While arrest warrant searches are typically best approached from the bottom up, sometimes it makes sense to start at the top and work down from there. Even if you know the jurisdiction you want to search for an arrest warrant is Dubuque County; you may find all you need by starting at the state level. Beginning with Iowa, state agencies may not always be successful, but even if you do not find the exact information you seek, you may still find data that aids in your search.
Many law enforcement agencies make use of various media outlets to help them apprehend criminals either by publishing a list of outstanding arrest warrants or by posting the jurisdiction’s “Most Wanted.”The Dubuque County sheriff refers online users to http://www.telegraphherald.com/crimeandcourt/mostwanted/ to review the list of the county’s most wanted suspects. The plan is called “Tri-States’ Most Wanted” and is a joint program of Dubuque/Jo Daviess Crime Stoppers and the tri-state law enforcement agencies. As with most other sites listing alleged criminals and/or the names of people with active warrants, individuals are urged not to approach any listed individuals even if they know there are warrants for that person’s arrest. Instead, they should contact the police or other law enforcement officers and allow them to make any necessary arrests. The Most Wanted page also makes the following disclaimer:
An individual who has been charged but not convicted is presumed innocent. Although Crime Stoppers will make every effort to update the accuracy of this list regularly, only law enforcement can ascertain the real-time validity of an existing warrant.
The Dubuque County Sheriff’s website has no online links for arrest warrant listings, arrest records or a list of Dubuque County jail inmates. Contacting the sheriff is one good option for obtaining information on outstanding warrants. The Dubuque County Sheriff’s Office’s mailing address is Dubuque Law Enforcement Center, 770 Iowa Street, P.O. Box 1004, Dubuque, Iowa 52004-1004. Their telephone number is (563) 589-4406.
One statewide resource for information is the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation, which provides IA Criminal History Background Checks. Their website is https://dps.iowa.gov/divisions/criminal-investigation/criminal-history/record-check-forms.The DCI offers a few options for obtaining a criminal history record. Individuals may make a request via mail, via FAX, or in person at the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation offices at 215 East 7th Street, Des Moines, Iowa 50319. An online search option provides that criminal history data releasable by law without a waiver signed by the search subject. The site also provides the forms required to request a criminal history record.