Everyone tries to go through their life without getting arrested. Unfortunately, that doesn’t always work out for everybody. Then, when an arrest does occur, people often have no idea what to expect. Most people don’t even know what to expect during the booking process. They may have a slight idea from TV shows, but it isn’t enough to go off of.
The basic steps are as follows:
• Recording person’s name and other information. This information gets added to the system.
• Taking a mugshot. This helps law enforcement distinguish between two people who might have the same name, and helps provide physical descriptions of the person.
• Confiscating the person’s personal belongings. These items will be returned after the person is released.
• Taking fingerprints. These are entered into a nationwide database and can help place a person at the scene of a crime.
• Conducting a full body search. The officers want to make sure that nothing is snuck into lockup so they will search everywhere.
• Checking for warrants. It is important to make sure that the person who was arrested isn’t being looked for in other areas for other crimes.
• Health screening. Jails are controlled environments and introducing any diseases into them could be disastrous, so they want to make sure that everyone going into jail is healthy.
• Checking for any affiliations. If a person is affiliated with any gangs, or other people, that can cause safety problems within a jail. Officers will check for these affiliations to know if they need to provide protective custody conditions to keep the person safe from other inmates.
• Taking a DNA sample. This will be entered into a national database where it can be compared against any other crimes where DNA was collected.
The booking process is pretty much the same across the state. How long the process takes depends on how busy the arresting agency is that day. It can take anywhere from a few minutes to a few hours.