Search Warrants

Search Warrant Process

  • When magistrates issue a search warrant, they are giving a law enforcement officer authority to conduct a search to aid an official investigation. The officer seeking the search warrant must make a complaint, under oath, stating the purpose of the search to the magistrate. The complaint must be supported by a written affidavit from the officer. In issuing the search warrant, the magistrate must describe the place to be searched, the property or person to be searched for, and state that the magistrate has found probable cause to believe that the property or person constitutes evidence of a crime or tends to show that a person has committed a crime.
  • After a magistrate issues a search warrant, the affidavit and return are filed in the Circuit Court Clerk’s office Criminal Division.

*Please note: Court personnel are prohibited by law from giving legal advice. If you need assistance or advice, please see our Legal Aid and Links page.