Individuals can obtain a copy of a police report by contacting the issuing police department and requesting a copy of the report, according to FindLaw. Some departments may charge a small fee to photocopy the police report and require individuals to appear in person to retrieve the documents.
Some police departments publish police reports online that can be retrieved or downloaded by the general public, according to the City of Chicago. The online databases allow users to search crimes and police reports by district, community areas or street addresses. Police departments also maintain reports on crime trends, annual crime statistics and homicide and domestic violence incidents.