A Missouri criminal background check can reveal both open and closed criminal records, but the detail of the information disclosed depends on who is requesting the information.
You Need to Know What’s On Your Criminal Background Report
It’s a good idea to obtain a copy of your criminal background report, just so you know exactly what will be revealed to potential employers, colleges, landlords, banks, etc.
It’s very common for someone to have been charged with a crime in the past (shoplifting, marijuana possession, under-age drinking) and think the charge has been dropped or “sealed” but later discover that an arrest or conviction is showing up on their criminal background report.
If you know exactly what is on your criminal background report, you will be prepared to explain to potential employers about a previous criminal charge or arrest. It’s better to explain in advance about being arrested or charged with a crime, rather than look like a liar because you incorrectly claimed to have a clean criminal record.
The Difference Between Open and Closed Criminal Records
A Basic Name Search criminal background report shows open records only.
A Fingerprint Search criminal background report shows both open and closed records.
When you have been charged with a crime but the case is not resolved yet, your case is an open pending case, which is an open record.
Closed records show what happened in the past. So, if you were arrested but the Prosecutor dismissed the charge, you pleaded guilty, or the Prosecutor reduced the charge to a lesser offense, the case is closed and that is a closed record.
EXAMPLE: If you were not arrested but you were charged with shoplifting and you hired an attorney who got the charge dismissed, a Basic Name Search will show nothing. A Fingerprint Search will reveal that you were charged with shoplifting and the case was dismissed, but only if the requesting entity is the type of employer that is entitled to see both open and closed records.
When Do Arrests and Convictions Show Up On a Criminal Background Report?
If an entity that is entitled to see both open and closed records requests just a Basic Name Search criminal background report, that report will show both open and closed records, so arrests and convictions will both show up.
EXAMPLE If you were arrested for marijuana possession and your attorney negotiates a plea bargain deal with the Prosecuting Attorney to reduce the charge to “Littering,” that’s an open record and a Basic Name Search will reveal that the Prosecutor 1) filed charges against you for marijuana possession, and 2) you were convicted of “Littering.” The arrest will not show up but the Prosecutor’s action of filing the charge of marijuana possession will show up.
EXAMPLE: If you were arrested for shoplifting and your attorney convinces the Prosecuting Attorney to dismiss your case, that’s a closed record, so nothing will show up on a Basic Name Search criminal background report. In this situation, if you request a Fingerprint Search criminal background report, both open and closed records will show up, and the report will reveal that you were arrested for shoplifting and your case was dismissed, but only if the requesting entity is entitled to see both open and closed records.
Recent Arrests Will Show Up On a Basic Criminal Background Check
If you were arrested up to 30 days ago, the arrest is considered “fresh” and will show up on a Basic Name Search background check, even if the potential employer is not entitled to see both open and closed records.
Probation Will Show Up On a Basic Criminal Background Report
If you received a Suspended Imposition of Sentence (SIS) with probation, it’s an open pending case while you are on probation and is considered an open record. It will become a closed record after you successfully complete probation and your case is closed.
The fact that you are on probation will show up even on a Basic Name Search criminal background report because it’s an open record.
If you apply for a job with an “entitled entity” employer like a daycare, the employer can require you to get a Fingerprint Search criminal background check, which will show the following:
- Were you on probation in the past?
- What were you on probation for?
- Did you successfully complete probation?
- Is the case closed?
You Don’t Have to Agree To Disclose All Records, Even If a Potential Employer Requests It
Some employers ask potential employees to get fingerprinted and request a Fingerprint Search criminal background report, even though the employer is not an entity that is entitled to see both open and closed records.
In that situation, the potential employee can choose what they want the potential employer to see — open records only, or both open and closed records. So, the person applying for a job who is required to get fingerprinted can request that only open records be disclosed on the background report, if the employer is not an entitled entity.
Some Employers Can Require Job Applicants to Disclose Both Open and Closed Criminal Records
If you are applying for a job with an “entitled entity” employer (criminal justice agency, state government, day care, etc.) and you are required to get fingerprinted and request a Fingerprint Search criminal background report, you must agree to disclose both open and closed records.
What Is An “Entitled Entity” Employer?
“Entitled Entity” employers are those that are legally entitled to require job applicants to get fingerprinted and disclose both open and closed records prior to being considered for a job.
Examples of Entitled Entities: day care, nursing home, criminal justice agency, State of Missouri.
How to Get a Copy of Your Criminal Record Check
To order a Missouri criminal record check, go online to the Missouri State Highway Patrol Criminal Justice Information Services (CJIS) website or call CJIS at (573) 526-6153.
Or you can go to the state police headquarters in the county in which you live and request a Fingerprint Search criminal background report. The Fingerprint Search criminal background report is more thorough than the criminal background report that you purchase online from CJIS.
If you have questions about what is showing up on your Missouri criminal background report, or how to obtain a criminal background report, call the Missouri State Highway Patrol Criminal Justice Information Services (CJIS) at (573) 526-6153.
To get help for your criminal case, call St. Louis criminal defense attorney Andrea Storey Rogers at (314) 724-5059 for a free consultation and a price quote for legal representation. Or email Andrea at email@example.com
When you receive a summons from a criminal court, it means you have been charged with a criminal offense and you must appear in court on your court date to respond to the charge.
What Happens If You Don’t Respond To A Summons?
After receiving a summons to appear in criminal court, you must go to court on your court date, or else the court will issue a warrant for your arrest.
What If You Did Not Receive The Summons From The Court?
Sometimes the court mails a summons to a defendant but the defendant does not receive it because the court has an incorrect mailing address on file for the defendant, or otherwise sent it to the wrong address.
The court is required to mail the summons to the defendant to notify them of the court date, but the court has no responsibility to make sure the defendant actually received the summons.
So, if the court sends a summons to you at the wrong address and you don’t receive the summons, the court can issue a warrant for your arrest.
What To Do If You Missed Your Court Date
If you have a warrant because you did not receive the summons from the court and missed your court date, your attorney can lift the warrant for you. Your attorney will make sure the warrant is cancelled and a new court date is scheduled.
Hiring an attorney to lift your warrant allows you to avoid turning yourself in to police, paying the bond, and appearing in court.
How To Respond To A Summons
If you have received a summons to appear in criminal court in Missouri, you can do one of the following:
- Go to court on your court date and plead guilty
- Go to court on your court date and plead not guilty
- Go to court on your court date and ask the judge for a continuance to give you more time to hire an attorney to represent you
- Hire an attorney to represent you in court so you don’t have to appear in court
If you plead guilty to a criminal offense, you will be ordered to pay fines and court costs, and you will end up with a conviction on your criminal record.
If you plead guilty to speeding tickets or other moving violations, you will have to pay fines and court costs, points will be added to your driving record, and your car insurance rates will probably increase.
The added points may cause your driver’s license to be suspended or revoked if you accumulate:
- 8 points within 18 months
- 12 points within 12 months
- 18 points within 24 months
- 24 points within 36 months
If you plead not guilty, the judge will schedule your case for trial and you will have to decide whether to represent yourself or hire an attorney to represent you at trial.
An Attorney Can Help If You Received a Summons To Appear In Court
You can hire an attorney to respond to your summons and represent you in court for your criminal case.
Your attorney can represent you at trial or negotiate a pre-trial plea bargain deal with the court on your behalf, and you may not have to appear in court at all.
An experienced attorney can get your criminal charge dismissed or reduced to a lesser offense. The outcome of your case depends on the following:
- How old are you?
- How serious was the criminal charge?
- Which court is your case being prosecuted in?
- Do you have any prior convictions on your criminal record?
If you have received a summons to appear in a Missouri court for a speeding ticket or other criminal charge, call criminal defense attorney Andrea Storey Rogers at (314) 724-5059 for a free consultation and a price quote for legal representation. Or email Andrea at firstname.lastname@example.org
Get your warrant cancelled for $10 at the 2016 St. Louis warrant amnesty event on August 6, 11 & 13, 2016 at St. Louis Community College.
How Much Does it Cost to Get a Warrant Lifted at the Warrant Amnesty Event?
For a $10 fee, people with outstanding warrants for old traffic tickets, misdemeanors, and child support cases can get their warrants lifted and obtain a new court date.
When is the 2016 St. Louis Amnesty Event?
The warrant amnesty program is sponsored by St. Louis Community College and Better Family Life. The warrant amnesty event will take place from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on the following dates:
St. Louis Community College – Meramec Campus – Saturday, August 6, 2016
St. Louis Community College – Florissant Valley Campus – Thursday, August 11, 2016
St. Louis Community College – Forest Park Campus – Saturday, August 13, 2016
Warrant Amnesty Lifts Your Warrant But Does Not Dismiss the Charges
The warrant amnesty program does not dismiss your tickets, misdemeanor charges, or child support cases, but it does allow you to get your warrant cancelled and obtain a new court date. At that point, you can either hire an attorney to represent you in court or go to court on your own and represent yourself.
If you were making payments on outstanding ticket fines and missed a payment, resulting in a warrant being issued, this warrant amnesty program will allow you to pay $10 to get your warrant lifted. Then you can go to court and ask the judge to put your case back on the payment docket so you can continue to make payments for the unpaid fines.
Not All St. Louis Courts Are Participating in the 2016 Warrant Amnesty
Before attending the warrant amnesty event, you should call the court that issued your warrant to confirm that they are participating in the warrant amnesty, since not all courts in the St. Louis area are taking part in this amnesty event.
Click here to read a recent news article about the St. Louis warrant amnesty program.
For more information about the 2016 St. Louis Warrant Amnesty Program, you can contact Better Family Life (314) 367-3440.
If you have a warrant in a Missouri court that is not participating in the 2016 St. Louis warrant amnesty event, you can call St. Louis attorney Andrea Storey Rogers at (314) 724-5059 for a price quote to get your warrant lifted and get legal representation for your case. Or email her at email@example.com
Thousands of people will get refunds for warrant recall fees they paid to St. Louis City Municipal Court.
Since 2009, St. Louis City Municipal Court has charged defendants a fee to lift their warrants and give them a new court date. As the result of a class action lawsuit, the City must refund a total of $750,000 to 21,000 defendants who paid these warrant cancellation fees.
Warrant recall fees ranged from $35 to $45, depending on how old the warrant was.
As a result of the lawsuit, St. Louis City Municipal Court will no longer be allowed to charge warrant recall fees.
Click here to read the KMOV Ch. 4 news article for more information about the St. Louis refund of warrant cancellation fees.
If you need legal representation for a Missouri speeding ticket, warrant, or criminal charge, call St. Louis traffic & criminal defense attorney Andrea Storey Rogers at (314) 724-5059 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Call St. Louis traffic law attorney Andrea Storey Rogers at (314) 724-5059 about your Missouri speeding ticket or other traffic violation.
Today the Missouri Supreme Court will hear oral arguments on cases involving the use of red light cameras and speed cameras in St. Louis city, Moline Acres, and St. Peters.
Click on this link to go to the Missouri Supreme Court website to read summaries of the cases being heard today in the Missouri Supreme Court.
One case involves the use of speed cameras in the city of Moline Acres (a St. Louis County suburb); the other two cases involve red light cameras in the city of St. Louis and the city of St. Peters.
Listen to Oral Arguments in the Missouri Supreme Court Red Light Camera Hearing
You can listen live to the attorneys’ oral arguments in these three cases by going to the Missouri Supreme Court website or by clicking on this link: http://www.courts.mo.gov/page.jsp?id=1977. You can only use this link today to listen live to the oral arguments.
When Will the Missouri Supreme Court Issue its Ruling in the Red Light Camera Cases?
The Missouri Supreme Court is hearing oral arguments today by attorneys representing the parties in these red light/speed camera cases, but the Court is not expected to issue its rulings on these cases until the end of the year.
Should I Pay My Red Light Camera Fine?
I can not advise you regarding whether or not you should pay your red light camera ticket fine. The information that I provide in this blog post is general information and should not be considered legal advice because there is no attorney-client relationship created by your reading this blog post.
However, I can tell you that, if you pay your St. Louis city red light camera ticket fine now, it will be considered a voluntary payment. The city of St. Louis must put that money in escrow and can not use it until after the Missouri Supreme Court determines whether or not the St. Louis city red light camera ordinance is legal.
Will the Court Issue an Arrest Warrant if I Don’t Pay my Red Light Camera Fine?
For the past several years, the St. Louis City Municipal Court has had the power to issue warrants if drivers refuse to pay red light camera ticket fines, but the Court has not issued warrants in those cases. This appears to be a temporary policy that the Court has enacted and, therefore, the Court could decide to change its policy at any time and start issuing warrants for drivers who refuse to pay their red light camera fines.
What if the Missouri Supreme Court Rules that the Red Light Cameras are Legal?
If the Missouri Supreme Court rules that the red light cameras used by the city of St. Louis are legal, the city of St. Louis could pursue drivers who refused to pay red light camera fines and demand payment for the unpaid amount.
Will I Get a Refund if St. Louis City Red Light Cameras Are Ruled Illegal?
If the Missouri Supreme Court rules that the red light cameras used in the city of St. Louis are illegal, it is possible that the City would be forced to issue full or partial refunds to all drivers who have paid red light camera fines in the past. However, there have been other cities in the United States that were forced to quit using red light cameras but were not required to issue refunds.
The Missouri Supreme Court will decide whether the City’s red light camera law is legal and whether or not the City must issue refunds to those who have already paid red light camera fines.
If you have a Missouri speeding ticket that you want to get reduced to a non-moving, no-point violation, call St. Louis traffic law attorney Andrea Storey Rogers at (314) 724-5059 or email Andrea at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org for a price quote and estimate of your fine and court costs.