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Before the emergence of professional commercial records providers, the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) was the only option for accessing Criminal History information. It is organized into 14 divisions and the Law Enforcement Support Division oversees the Crime Records and Criminal History Search units in providing enforcement officials and the public with information pertaining to crime. There are 12 units in all within Law Enforcement Support. Texas Arrest Records is administered by the Crime Records Unit of the Crime Records Service Bureau (CRS) and the Criminal History Search Unit through their Computerized Criminal History (CCH) system. These Arrest information and data of individuals are gathered at county level across the state of Texas. The agencies involved fall under State jurisdiction and Texas Arrest Records are therefore governed by the State laws of Texas.
Under Texan law, files on arrests are deemed public information. They are thus mandated to be available to the general public upon request. Even non-public arrest records may be accessed and retrieved by authorized personnel as long as prior consent of the subject is obtained. Entities which are constitutionally warranted also possess the same rights to this information.
There are standard procedures to follow in accessing Texas Arrest Records through government agencies. CRS’s public and private online systems offer name-based search service. Fees are required and they vary in accordance with the specific type of search performed and the mode of payment and activation. Typically, it costs $3 per copy of the search results and an additional 2.25 percent processing fee per credit charge and $.50 transaction fee if a credit card is used. Mailed applications and e-based fingerprints (applicants are required to be fingerprinted) cost $15 and $9.95 respectively.
Department of Public Safety of Texas contact info.
Address: 5805 North Lamar Blvd.
Austin, Texas 78752-4422
Telephone: (512) 424-2000
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