New York State Police

Records Request: Frequently Asked Questions

How do I find out the disposition of my arrest?

Dispositions for criminal cases and traffic offenses are maintained by the appropriate court of jurisdiction, not by the State Police. Contact the criminal court in the town, village, or city in which the incident occurred. The New York State Office of Court Administration may help you find the contact information for your court.

How do I request my Criminal History record?

In New York State, the Division of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS) maintains criminal histories, not the State Police. The DCJS web address is http://www.criminaljustice.ny.gov/ojis/recordreview.htm

What is the difference between POL 66-a and the Freedom of Information Law?

The Freedom of Information Law of 1974 is intended for the public to have exposure to how their government works by requesting records such as budgets, expenditures, vendor contracts, building lease agreements, personnel salaries, policies, etc.

Public Officers Law § 66-a a is intended to provide reports pertaining to specific incidents to involved persons, parties with a legitimate interest, or representatives of such persons including attorneys and insurance companies. These reports may include accident reconstruction, investigation, and arrest reports.

How do I view the POL § 66-a and the Freedom of Information Law?

The New York State Legislature posts its bills and laws on: http://public.leginfo.state.ny.us. Select Laws of New York.

How does my attorney, insurance company, or private investigator request copies of investigation reports on my behalf?

The process is the same for your representative as it is for you. See: "How do I request a copy of records pertaining to an incident?" Your representative should use company letterhead to verify they are representing you.

How does my attorney subpoena records?

A subpoena is a court order governed by the Civil Practice Law and Rules § 2307. Once issued, it must be personally served at NYSP Headquarters, 1220 Washington Ave, Building # 22, Albany, New York with the statutory fee of $30.00, both addressed to the "Superintendent of State Police".

How long does it take to receive copies of records?

Requests for records are assessed upon receipt. The State Police attempts to answer requests in 5 business days. It may not be possible for several reasons: the complexity of the request itself, amount of records responsive to the request, extensive statewide searches, limited state work force, and the amount of redaction required by law. See "Tips for Making Records Requests."

If a request cannot be fulfilled in 5 business days, the State Police will send a notification of receipt and an estimated timeframe for the response.

How is my privacy protected when other people request records?

New York State laws protect citizens' privacy. The State Police will protect the privacy of individuals identified in reports where it could cause unwarranted invasion of personal privacy. There are many aspects of protection spelled out in sub-section 2 of the Freedom of Information Law. Depending on the content, the entire record may be exempted or certain information in the record may be redacted.

What are "redactions"?

"Redacting" is a method by which statutorily exempted information in a record is "blacked out" while accessible information can remain visible to you.

If I am a victim of a crime, can anyone get my name by requesting State Police records?

No. The State Police adheres to the principle of privacy protection and will not routinely release names of crime victims.

If I am convicted of a crime, can anyone get my name by requesting records?

Yes. Court convictions are public records. Exceptions include records concerning juveniles and court-ordered sealed records in accordance with state statutes.

How can my request for records under the Freedom of Information Law be denied?

The State Police will notify you in writing if your request is denied and provide the reason(s) for the denial. The FOIL Law exempts records which: