Arrest Records in Indiana

Table of Contents

Indiana has a population of 6.69 million, making it the 15th most populated state and the 16th most densely populated state in the country. Indianapolis is the state’s capital and largest city with a population of 872,680. The state has 92 counties, the largest of which is Marion County, while the smallest is Ohio County.

Crime in Indiana is at roughly the same rate of the nation, overall: its 2018 violent crime rate of 3.82 per 1,000 is just a shade higher than the national rate. Indianapolis is the state’s most dangerous city, with a violent crime rate of 12.73. In arrests per capita, Indiana ranks 26th in the United States. 

Indiana Arrest and Crime Statistics

  • In 2018, there were 125,536 arrests as reported by 202 law enforcement agencies. This number includes 8,831 arrests of minors under the age of 18.
  • There were 7,236 arrests for violent crimes in 2018, including 1,118 for robbery, 212 for rape, and 184 for murder and nonnegligent manslaughter. 
  • The leading identified cause of arrest in Indiana by a considerable margin was drug abuse violations, which accounted for 25,058 arrests. 
  • 11,890 people were arrested for driving under the influence, while 3,261 were arrested for drunkenness.
  • There are around 10,000 registered sex offenders residing in Indiana.

Sources: FBI: 2018 Crime in the United States, Indiana Sex & Violent Offender Registry

What is a public arrest record?

An arrest record is a report produced by a law enforcement entity after the arrest or apprehension of an individual which contains the details of the incident, the individual’s personal information, and occasionally includes additional information about the individual’s criminal record.

An arrest record is often a key document in a criminal case and may play a significant role in an ensuing trial. The arrest record may remain in the public record for a long time regardless of whether the suspect is ultimately convicted of the crime(s) for which they were initially arrested. This means that it can be accessed by the general public.  

What is included in a public arrest record?

  • Description of the incident: An arrest record will include a chronological account of the alleged crime produced by the arresting officer that may utilize information provided by first-hand witnesses and/or victims of the alleged crime. 
  • Date and location of the arrest
  • Physical description: The height, weight, hair color, sex, and race of the arrested person, along with other distinguishing characteristics such as tattoos, scars, or birthmarks. 
  • Personal information: The name, age, date of birth, phone number, address, social security number, and other contact information of the arrested individual, as well as any other names the person may go by. 
  • Photographs
  • Fingerprints
  • Criminal charges filed
  • Classification of the crime: Whether the alleged crime is a felony or a misdemeanor.
  • Bail
  • Court date
  • Police interrogation details

What are the types of charges that may appear on an arrest record?

Generally, charges are classified into three main categories:

  • Infraction – An infraction is a minor violation of the law that is regulated at the state level. Punishment for an infraction is typically a fine or a written warning, rather than a jail or prison sentence. Examples of infractions include minor traffic violations, public nuisance offenses, and littering. 
  • Misdemeanor – A misdemeanor is a crime that is more serious than an infraction, but less severe than a felony, and generally punishable by a term of imprisonment of less than a year, or a term of probation. An individual convicted of a misdemeanor is more likely to serve time in a county or local jail than a federal or state prison. Examples of misdemeanors include driving under the influence, most drug abuse violations, and petty theft.
  • Felony – A felony is the most serious type of crime and generally results in a term of imprisonment of more than one year in a state or federal prison. Having a felony on one’s record may result in limitations of employment and the acquisition of specialty licenses. Examples of felonies include rape, murder, and arson.  

Who can access arrest records?

As in most other states, arrest records (also known as arrest reports) are public records in Indiana and can be accessed by anyone upon request to a law enforcement agency, and may come up during a routine background check. 

Other examples of Indiana public records include:

  • vital records such as birth and death certificates
  • marriage licenses
  • mugshots
  • court records
  • voting records
  • property records 

Where are physical copies of arrest records kept in Indiana?

Arrest records are typically held by the law enforcement agency responsible for the arrest, usually a local police department or county sheriff’s office. They also may be kept in the archive of a state government agency, or circuit court. However, there is no official repository for arrest records. 

Why can’t I access an arrest record in Indiana?

There are a number of reasons why you may not be able to access an arrest record. Although the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requires federal agencies to release arrest records and other public records, records that fall under certain exemptions can be withheld from the public.

The FOIA includes nine exemptions that allow agencies to withhold documents, such as arrest records, and not release them to the public. They are:

  1. The information is classified to protect natural security. 
  2. The information focuses on the internal rules and practices of the agency.
  3. Another federal law prohibits the release of the information.
  4. The information includes confidential trade secrets and/or commercial and financial information. 
  5. The information includes privileged, confidential communicative exchanges between two agencies. 
  6. The information could pose a danger to another person’s privacy if released.
  7. The information is reserved for law enforcement purposes in a court case or an investigation or could reveal a confidential source. 
  8. The information includes confidential information about financial institution supervision. 
  9. The information includes geographical information about wells.

Additionally, some state laws limit the availability of arrest records due to the fact that they are perceived as one-sided documents that do not include the arrested person’s account of the incident. 

What is the difference between an arrest record and a criminal record?

Compared to an arrest record, a criminal record is a more thorough document that details an individual’s entire criminal history, including arrest warrants, arrests, third party complaints, convictions, and even dropped cases. 

What is the difference between an arrest record and an arrest warrant?

An arrest warrant is a document issued by a judge or magistrate that grants law enforcement the authority to arrest an individual suspected of a crime or to search and seize the individual’s property, whereas an arrest record is a document of an arrest that is only created after an arrest or apprehension has already occurred.  

In order for a judge or magistrate to issue an arrest warrant, they must conclude that there is probable cause for an arrest. Probable cause must be backed by sworn testimony or an affidavit that provides sufficient information supporting the need for an arrest. An arrest warrant must also specify one individual that should be arrested, rather than a group of individuals or a rough description of a suspect. 

How many Americans have been arrested?

While crime has steadily dropped in the United States over the past several decades, arrests have gone up, particularly for younger age groups. Typically, law enforcement makes around 10 million arrests each year. Here are some key statistics on arrests in the United States:

  • In 2018, around 10.3 million arrests were made nationwide.
  • 73% of arrested persons in 2018 were males.
  • The more recent an American was born, the greater the likelihood that the individual has been arrested at least once. The following is the percentage of Americans in various age groups that have been arrested: 
    • 6.4% of Americans  born before 1949
    • 10.7% of Americans born between 1949 and 1958
    • 13.8% of Americans born between 1959 and 1968
    • 18.7% of Americans born between 1969 and 1978
    • 23% of Americans born between 1979-1988

Sources: Federal Bureau of Investigation, RAND Corporation

How to search for Indiana Arrest Records on the Internet

The Indiana State Police allows individuals to perform a Limited Criminal History search online, which solely contains felonies and class A misdemeanor arrest records in the state. Records stored in the Indiana State Police database date back to the 1930s. 

In order to perform a search, users must first register here. Each search costs $16.32 and may be paid for using a credit or debit card. Take note that users will be charged for a search even if it yields no results. Click here to perform a search. 

How can I request an Indiana Limited Criminal History by mail?

In addition to the online search, individuals may request a Limited Criminal History through the mail. The price is $7 which can be paid by money order made out to the State of Indiana. Simply print and complete a Request Form and submit it in-person or send it to the following address:

Indiana State Police, Criminal History Limited Check 

P.O. Box 6188, 

Indianapolis, IN, 46206-6188

If you have any questions regarding the request process, contact the Indiana State Police at 317-233-5424.

How can I search for an Indiana arrest record on the internet using a background check service?

Since tracking down physical copies of arrest records can prove challenging, searching for them online is a viable option. There is a wealth of online services that allow you to search and access Indiana arrest records and other public records via numerous government agency databases in exchange for a fee. 

However, despite the fact that users must pay to obtain an arrest record from an online service, it’s nevertheless a convenient means of getting these documents. The offices of government agencies are often marred by inconsistent service and take a long time to process requests to view documents. 

Sometimes it’s worth it to pay a fee to use an online background check service, rather than endure the extended delays typical of government offices.  

What can I do if my Indiana arrest record has a mistake?

The Indiana State Police Criminal Justice Services Section allows people to challenge incomplete or inaccurate information on an Indiana arrest record or another criminal history document, but you will need a fingerprint-based Full Criminal History report in order to do so. 

To complete a Criminal Record Review Challenge, you must schedule an appointment to have an electronic fingerprint scanning at a designated service center. Follow the steps below to signup for a scan and complete the challenge:

  1. Visit this page and click “Request a Fingerprinting Appointment Online” at the bottom of the page.
  2. Click “Online Scheduling” on the IdentGO page.
  3. Select “Criminal Record Review/Challenge” from the dropbox and click “Go”
  4. Enter your zip code or choose your region of the state to find the nearest fingerprinting location.
  5. You will be presented with a list of fingerprint scan center options and a calendar. Schedule an appointment at a convenient time. 
  6. Payment can be done online during scheduling with a credit or debit card or at the service center with a cashier’s check or money order. 
  7. After completing the fingerprint scanning process, you will be given a Full Criminal History transcript or No Record Letter if you have no record in Indiana.
  8. With your Full Criminal History transcript, you may now challenge any part of your record by bringing it, along with any court documentation that supports your challenge, to this address: 

Indiana State Police CJIS Section

Indiana Government Center North

Suite N-302

100 N. Senate Avenue

Indianapolis, IN 46204


If you’re worried that someone you know or love has a criminal record and maybe hiding it from you, run a quick background check online with Thanks to public records laws, almost all Indiana arrests, criminal and civil records are available online, as well as comprehensive background checks and secret data. You can even find Indiana marriage records, secret divorce records as well as birth and death records.

Violent Crime rate 

Property Crime rate 

Murder Crime rate 

Forcible Rape rate 

Robbery rate 

Assault rate 

Burglary rate 

Theft rate 

Motor Vehicle Theft rate