The Arizona Department of Public safety hosts the Records and Identification Bureau (RIB) which maintains the Crime History Records Section. The RIB is in charge of providing responsive crime history information to justice agencies as well as the public. The agency collects feeds on arrests, the issue of active warrants, case dispositions and the occurrence of criminal matters from law enforcement agencies and the state judiciary. The reach of the agency as well as the extensiveness of the work it does can be gauged from the following figures:
- The RIB is responsible for maintaining no less than 1.4 million records on criminal history
- They also hold over 74,000 Arizona outstanding warrants from the Department of Public safety and the Motor vehicle Department
- Annually, the agency receives almost 2.7 million civilian requests for crime history records and warrant searches
- Every year, the RIB enters a massive 450,000 arrest s and dispositions into the ACCH system (Arizona Computerized Crime History)
- The department also has the job of researching missing and incomplete criminal dispositions at the behest of the NICS (National Instant Criminal Background Check System)
What type of records are held by the Arizona Department of Public Safety?
While the Records and Identification Bureau only handles crime history data, the DPS acts as a repository for all sorts of information. The public records maintained by the agency include police reports about incidents and offenses, certified records, 911 tapes and logs, civil subpoenas and more.
Department records comprise of photographs, offense reports, accident reports, warnings, citations and repair orders. The criminal history records wing of the agency offers information pertaining to criminal matters and offers employers background checks and clearance letters.
How do the DSP and the RIB collect and disseminate the information in their databases?
Pursuant to Arizona Revised Statutes 41-1750, the Crime History Records Section has been designated as the central repository for criminal records in the state of Arizona and as such all local criminal justice agencies are required by law to report arrests and dispositions to this section of the DSP.
When it comes to the dissemination of crime history records, these are not made available to every applicant by default. In fact, the Freedom of Information Act of the state dictates that this data only be offered to authorized parties. Generally, this category will include hospitals, day care and foster care centers and any non criminal, non-government agency that offers care or treatment to elders, disabled people or children.
Under ARS 41-1750(G), the DPS is prohibited from handling request for crime history that come from private applicants and employers. The inquiries offered by the agency are fingerprint based. So, if you are an employer who is legislatively authorized to seek crime history data, you will have to contact the DPS with information about the subject as well as his fingerprint card.
In fact, even personal background checks are launched on the basis of fingerprint cards, so if you have been told that you will need fingerprint clearance from the Arizona DSP to seek employment in an organization, you can connect with the Applicant Clearance Card Team at (602) 223-2279
The DSP does not offer information on criminal matters that have occurred outside the state of Arizona. For this applicants will have to approach the Federal Bureau of Investigation at:
Special Correspondence Unit1000 Custer Hollow Road Clarksburg, WV 26306 (304) 625-3878
People who are interested in personal background reports will need to download the review packet at http://www.azdps.gov/Services/Records/Criminal_History_Records/Packet/ and send a completed copy of this to the agency at:
Arizona Department of Public Safety2102 W. Encanto BlvdPhoenix, AZ 85009