SHOW ME THE RECORDS: Missouri court records available online

Monday, February 4, 2013 | 6:00 a.m. CST

COLUMBIA — Most government records are open to the public at no charge. These records give residents the opportunity to find out what’s going on, how their elected officials are spending tax dollars, how the various departments within a governmental entity work and other valuable information needed to make strong decisions for the future. Each week, the Missourian highlights a government record that is available to the public. For a complete list of Show Me the Records, go to

The records: Missouri court records

Why you'd want them: You can do a free and quick cursory background check on friends, family members and other people. These records show upcoming scheduled court events, any charges a defendant faces and any crimes adefendant has been found guilty of committing.

Where you get the records: Go to the Missouri Judicial Branch website at and select the second link under the Quick Links navigation bar labeled On the next page, select the link to Litigant Name Search. Fill in all the required information, in addition to any optional information you have available. Columbia is in the 13th Judicial Circuit, which includes Boone and Callaway counties. The more information included in the search, the more accurate the results will be.

How much will it cost: The information is free.

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