Wyoming Public Records

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The following is for informational purposes only

What are Wyoming Public Records, and How are They Created?

Wyoming Public Records

Wyoming's public records law states that "All public records shall be open for inspection by any person at reasonable times, during business hours of the state entity or political subdivision..." W.S. 16-4-202. The Wyoming Administration and Information Office has information regarding who is the designated public records person for each government agency. They strongly suggest submitting your request in writing. Although you can call or make your request in person, it is easier to trace if there is a paper trail. If your request for records is denied, you can contact the Public Records Ombudsman to appeal.

All government agencies, including the courts, law enforcement, the Secretary of State's Office, the Attorney General's Office, local town offices, the Department of Corrections, and others create, maintain, share, and store public records for the state of Wyoming.

Public records are defined by law as "any informationin a physical form created, accepted, or obtained by a governmental entity in furtheranceof its official function and transaction of public business which is not privileged or confidential by law." These records may include "[A]ny written communication or other information, whether in paper, electronic, or other physical form, received by a governmental entity in furtherance of the transaction of public business of the state or agency, institution or political subdivision of the state..." W.S. 16-4-201.

The Wyoming State Archives office is the government entity in charge of all historical public records. They have extensive records online, making it easy for you to search and find what you need. You may also visit in person. Some of their collections include vital records (for help with genealogy research), information on woman Suffrage, World War I records, death certificates, military and government public records, newspapers, county records, and a vast database of photographs.

 

How to Access Wyoming Public Records?

How to Access Wyoming Public Records

To make records requests easy, the state government created a handy guidebook to help. Their guidelines stipulate the following process:

  • Each government agency has a "designated public records person" to handle public records requests. They may or may not be the official custodian of the records.
  • You may request in person or in writing (they prefer in writing).
  • Be as specific as possible when making your request.
  • You may have to pay a fee for copies.
  • The agency has seven business days to respond to your request.
  • Await your records.

If you are denied a request, the state has appointed a "public records ombudsman" to help you file an appeal and get the records you need.

 

Different Types of Public Records in Wyoming

Wyoming Criminal Records

"The Division of Criminal Investigation within the Office of the Attorney General is designated as the central repository for criminal history record information." They have set up a website where you can go to request public criminal records per Wyoming Statute 7-19-101 through 109. Furthermore "For the purpose of maintaining complete and accurate criminal history record information at the central repository, all city, county, and state law enforcement agencies, district courts, courts of limited jurisdiction, district attorneys, the department of corrections, state juvenile correctional institutions and local probation and parole agencies shall submit the criminal history record information required under this section for which they are responsible to the division for filing at the earliest time possible following the occurrence of the reportable event.."

Some common types of criminal records in Wyoming include (but are not limited to):

  • Felony and Misdemeanor Records - some common misdemeanors in Wyoming are drunk driving, petty theft or shoplifting, vandalism, trespassing, breaking and entering, and simple assault. Some popular felonies committed in Wyoming are drug crimes, felonious assault, arson, sex crimes, and repeated drunk driving offenses.
  • WY Jail and Inmate Records - both jails and prisons keep inmate records, and those too are public records. The Wyoming Department of Corrections has an online search tool you can use to locate criminals and their records.
  • Police Records - local police can provide copies of incident reports, police reports, sometimes mugshots, and even crime scene photos upon request.

Wyoming Court Records

Different Types of Public Records in Wyoming

The Wyoming Judicial Branch of government is the agency in charge of all Court records in Wyoming. Their website has extensive information about each of the courts, downloadable PDF forms for you to use, and dozens of legal resources. However, they do not store their court documents online. Therefore, you have to use their map and list of courts to find the one you need and visit in person to request copies of public court records.

Some types of court records in Wyoming include:

  • Civil Court Records - domestic relations cases such as divorces, marriages, paternity lawsuits, custody and child support cases, estates, conservatorships, wills, civil lawsuits, and small claims lawsuits.
  • Criminal Court Records - criminal filings for misdemeanors, felonies, and other citations. These may include things like trial paperwork, sentencing, prison transfers, and evidence related to the court case.
  • Financial Court Records - bankruptcies, liens, tax issues, company stock filings, and corporate financial reports.
  • Other Court Records - such as bench warrants, arrest warrants, judgments, traffic tickets, and other traffic violations, worker's compensation cases, and name changes.

The court system in Wyoming consists of three levels beginning with the Supreme Court at the top, then the District Court, then Circuit and Municipal Courts.

Wyoming Arrest Records

Wyoming arrest records are included in the criminal reports available through the Criminal Records Unit - Division of Criminal Investigation. You can request them easily per their public records act. However, all the information comes from the courts and law enforcement agencies. If an arrest is not submitted to this agency, then it will not show up in the report. They even provide an email address if you have questions about records. You may also consult court records or the Department of Corrections for arrest records for convicted felons.

Some different types of arrests records in Wyoming are:

  • Drug charges.
  • Murder.
  • Shoplifting.
  • Shopping cart theft.
  • Prostitution.
  • Misrepresenting the age of a minor.
  • Kidnapping.
  • DUIs.
  • Sexual abuse.
  • Booking details like fingerprints and mugshots.
  • Arrest warrants granted by a judge.
  • Bench warrants for not appearing in court.
  • Crime scene photos.
  • Witness statements.
  • Property crimes and accompanying paperwork.
  • Vehicle records if one was used during the crime.

Wyoming Vital Records

The Wyoming Department of Health is the agency in charge of all vital records for the state. They store and maintain birth, death, marriage, and divorce certificates. They also handle paternity and adoption information and health statistics. You can request copies of vital records through the mail using their vital printable records request form. You must supply proper documentation when doing so.

 

Other Public Records in Wyoming

Other Public Records in Wyoming

Along with criminal, court, arrest, and vital records, other types of public records you can find in the state of Wyoming include, but are not limited to:

  • Government budgets and annual reports.
  • Driving records (without personally identifiable information).
  • Home addresses.
  • Maps, books, and tapes.
  • State health and wellness statistics.
  • Air and water quality (pollution reports).
  • Property records, real estate deals, and land deeds.
  • Home phone numbers.
  • Police and accident reports.
  • Liens & tax issues.
  • Company incorporation records.
  • Demographics.
  • Library Research.
  • Personnel records for state agencies.
  • Permits, licenses, and certifications.
  • Government employee salaries.
  • * 911 time response logs.
  • Grant applications.
  • Contracts involving government agencies.
  • Settlement agreements.
  • Agency decisions.
  • Name, title, and salary of public employees and officials.
 

What Information is Not Public Record in Wyoming?

The state of Wyoming has some exemptions that apply to public records requests. Three general ones include:

  • "Inspection would be contrary to state statute.
  • Inspection would be contrary to any federal statute or regulation – HIPAA,
  • social security numbers.
  • Inspection is prohibited by a court ruling or court order."

Some more specific exemptions are:

  • "Investigatory records.
  • Test questions, scoring keys, etc.…
  • Specific details of bona fid research projects of state institutions.
  • Real estate appraisals except as otherwise provided in the statute.
  • Intra-agency documents that would not be available by law during litigation.
  • State building records that might jeopardize the security of any structure owned, leased, or operated by the State.
  • Applications for the position of president of an institution of higher education."

Some additional exemptions include:

  • "Medical, physiological, and sociological data on individuals.
  • Adoption or welfare records on individuals.
  • Personnel files.
  • Letters of reference.
  • Trade secrets, privileged information, and confidential commercial or financial information.
  • Library, archives, and museum material contributed by private persons, to the extent of any limitations placed on the items during contribution.
  • Hospital records.
  • School district records regarding students.
  • Income tax returns.
  • Library patron transaction and registration records.
  • Information obtained through a 911 emergency call.
  • Personnel investigation files that are an unwarranted invasion of personal privacy.
  • Information on State I.T. systems.
  • Records relating to individual diagnoses of contagious and infectious diseases maintained or collected by the State veterinarian.
  • Information concerning agricultural operations.
  • Individual records involved in any workers' compensation claim.
  • Records of the consensus revenue estimating group.
  • Information obtained through a police officer recording – with exceptions.
  • Records of the investment funds committee."