The state of Utah has a population of 3.161 million, which makes it the 30th most populated state (moving up five positions in the past ten years) and the 40th most densely populated state. Roughly 2/3s of Utah residents are Mormons belonging to the Church of Latter-Day Saints. Utah’s capital and largest city is Salt Lake City, which has a population of around 200,500. Of Utah’s 29 counties, Salt Lake County is the most populated and Daggett County is the least populated.
Relative to the nationwide level, Utah has low crime: its 2018 violent crime rate of 2.33 per 1,000 is just 63.16% of the U.S. rate. The most dangerous city in Utah is South Salt Lake City, which logged a violent crime rate over four times the statewide rate. Utah actually has a pretty high rate of arrests, ranking 14th in the nation in arrests per capita.
Utah Arrest and Crime Statistics
- In 2018, 104,886 arrests occurred in Utah, as reported by 109 law enforcement agencies. 11.7% of these arrests were of minors under the age of 18.
- Just 2,327 arrests were made for violent crimes in the state, including 398 for robbery, 306 for rape, and 36 for murder and nonnegligent manslaughter.
- The leading identified cause of arrest in the state was drug abuse violations, which accounted for about 19.5 thousand arrests.
- 7,119 people were arrested for driving under the influence in the state, while 2,677 were arrested for drunkenness.
- There are over 8 thousand registered sex offenders in Utah, however, at least 2.2 thousand are currently incarcerated.
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.
- Criminal charges filed
- Classification of the crime: Whether the alleged crime is a felony or a misdemeanor.
- 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 Utah 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 Utah public records include:
- vital records such as birth and death certificates
- marriage licenses
- court records
- voting records
- property records
Where are physical copies of arrest records kept in Utah?
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 Utah?
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:
- The information is classified to protect natural security.
- The information focuses on the internal rules and practices of the agency.
- Another federal law prohibits the release of the information.
- The information includes confidential trade secrets and/or commercial and financial information.
- The information includes privileged, confidential communicative exchanges between two agencies.
- The information could pose a danger to another person’s privacy if released.
- The information is reserved for law enforcement purposes in a court case or an investigation or could reveal a confidential source.
- The information includes confidential information about financial institution supervision.
- 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
How to search for Arrest Records in Utah
Utah does not have an online search tool for arrest records and other criminal history information, unlike many states. However, there are two ways residents of the state can obtain a copy of their Utah criminal history record, including any existing arrest records: in person or through the mail. There is no official means of requesting copies of other individuals’ criminal history information in the state.
How to obtain a copy of your Utah criminal history record in person
In order to get a copy of your Utah criminal history in person, if one exists, visit the Utah Bureau of Criminal Identification at:
3888 West 5400 South
Taylorsville, Utah 84129
Phone number: 801-965-4445
Fax number: 801-965-4749
Bring a valid government picture ID and be prepared to pay a $15 fee with cash, VISA or Mastercard, personal check, cashier’s check, or money order. When you arrive, request a copy of your Utah criminal history and the process should go quickly. Office hours are 8 AM to 5 PM Monday through Friday.
How to obtain your Utah criminal history through the mail
Live far away from Salt Lake City? You can also get a copy of your Utah criminal history through the mail by following these simple steps:
- Fill out and print the Utah Criminal History Record Application.
- Enclose a copy of a valid government photo ID and a payment of $15 by money order, check, cashier’s check, or credit card, which you can use by putting your card number on the form.
- Mail the form, enclosed copy of your ID, and payment to:
Utah Bureau of Criminal Identification
3888 West 5400 South
Taylorsville, Utah 84129
Alternatively, you can email the form to [email protected] The email must be encrypted, and the criminal history record cannot be sent to you by email.
How can I search for a Utah 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 Utah 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 arrest record has a mistake?
Those with inaccurate or incomplete information on a Utah arrest record or criminal history document may submit an official challenge to the State of Utah, Department of Safety, Bureau of Criminal Identification (BCI). The application to challenge requires a $15 fee.
Complete these steps to submit the challenge:
- Fill out the top part of the Application to Challenge Criminal History Records form. Read and sign the application.
- Bring your application and a valid government-issued photo ID to a law enforcement agency office such as a local police department or county sheriff’s office in order to get your fingerprints taken on an official FD-258 Applicant 10 print card. You may also have your fingerprints taken at the Bureau of Criminal Identification office (address listed below).
- Attach a copy of your criminal history record with the information you’d like to challenge highlighted.
- Attach any supporting documentation that serves as proof to support your challenge.
- Prepare a $15 payment by check, credit card (by writing out your credit card number on the form), or money order. Cash is only accepted if the form is delivered in person.
- Mail or deliver in person the challenge, along with the criminal history record, photo ID copy, fingerprint card, and supporting documents, to:
Utah Bureau of Criminal Identification
3888 West 5400 South
Taylorsville, Utah 84129
If the challenge is documented to the BCI’s satisfaction, they will amend your Utah criminal history. If you have any questions, contact the BCI at 801-965-4445.
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 ArrestRecords.com. Thanks to public records laws, almost all Utah arrests, criminal and civil records are available online, as well as comprehensive background checks and secret data. You can even find Utah marriage records, secret divorce records as well as birth and death records.
Violent Crime rate
Property Crime rate
Murder Crime rate
Forcible Rape rate
Motor Vehicle Theft rate