What if someone I know is arrested?
Learning that a loved one has been arrested is a painful and stressful experience. Uncertainty and lack of information about the process only makes things more difficult. The arrest process is complex; there are exceptions to every rule. But the following information can help guide you through the process. A more detailed explanation of the arrest process is available at What to Expect if You Are Arrested.
Locating Your Loved One
People arrested by the NYPD are taken for initial processing to the precinct in which the arrest occurred. Within 4 to 6 hours they are then taken for further processing to Central Booking, located at the criminal court in the county of arrest. Once all processing and paperwork is complete, they await an appearance before a judge, called an arraignment. Arraignment usually happens within 24 hours of the arrest, and will probably be the first time you will be able to see your friend or loved-one following an arrest.
The New York City arraignment courts operate seven days a week, in two shifts: 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., and 5:00 p.m. to 1:00 a.m. Additionally, there are four overnight shifts Wednesday through Saturday in Manhattan from 1:00a.m. to 9:00a.m.
The following is a how-to for finding the specific information about where and when someone will be arraigned, including a borough-by-borough listing of the phone numbers and locations of the court houses, and subway and bus information for each county's criminal court (for more travel information and directions call the NYC Transit Information Line (718) 330-1234):
- To find out approximate time and courtroom of the arraignment, call Central Booking in the county of arrest and ask for the person's Arrest Number.
- Once you have obtained the Arrest Number (or if there is none available), call the Criminal Court Arraignment Clerk to find out when and in what courtroom the person will be arraigned.
- Central Booking (212) 374-3921
- New York County (Manhattan) Criminal Court (646) 386-4000
100 Centre Street
Directions: No. 4 or 5 train to Brooklyn Bridge Station; No. 6 train, N, R or C train to Canal Street; No. 1 train to Franklin Street; M1, M6 and M15 bus lines are nearby. 100 Centre Street is one block north of Worth Street, three blocks south of Canal Street.
- Central Booking (718) 935-9249
- Kings County (Brooklyn) Criminal Court (718) 643-5675
120 Schermerhorn Street
Directions: N, R or M train to Lawrence Street Station; G train to Hoyt-Schermerhorn Street Station; A, F or C train to Jay Street Station; 2, 3, 4 or 5 trains to Borough Hall Station. B67, B41 and B45 bus lines stop near Livingston Street and Smith Street; B63 and B65 bus lines stop near Atlantic Avenue and Smith Street.
- Central Booking (718) 298-0736
- Bronx County Criminal Court (718) 590-2886
215 East 161st Street, near Sherman and Sheridan Avenues.
Directions: C or D train to Yankee Stadium/161st Street Station; No. 4 train also stops at same station. BX 13 bus stops at East 161st Street and Sheridan Avenue; BX 6 stops at East 161st Street and Sherman Avenue; BX 1 stops at East 161st Street and Grand Concourse.
- Central Booking (718) 268-4523
- Queens County Criminal Court (718) 520-1985
125-01 Queens Blvd (near Hoover Avenue and 82nd Avenue)
Directions: E or F train to Union Turnpike Station. Q60, Q37, Q74 and Q46 buses all have stops in close proximity to Courthouse.
- Central Booking (718) 876-8493
- Richmond County (Staten Island) Criminal Court (718) 390-8400
Note: On weekends, call the Brooklyn Arraignment Office (718) 643-5675
67 Targee Street (between Frean and Purroy Streets)
Directions: From Ferry Terminal take S74 bus to Broad Street and Gordon Street or S78 bus to Broad Street and Thompkins Avenue; Courthouse is approximately four blocks from either stop.
If you are unable to get through to the Arraignment Clerk, you can go directly to the courthouse and consult the list of names of people awaiting arraignment, posted outside the Arraignment Clerk's Office. The name usually appears on the list a few hours before the person sees the judge. The list will tell you which courtroom has the case if there is more than one.