2020 Georgia Code
Title 35 - Law Enforcement Officers and Agencies
Chapter 3 - Georgia Bureau of Investigation
Article 1 - General Provisions
§ 35-3-4. Powers and Duties of Bureau Generally

Universal Citation: GA Code § 35-3-4 (2020)
  1. It shall be the duty of the bureau to:
    1. Take, receive, and forward fingerprints, photographs, descriptions, and measurements of persons in cooperation with the bureaus and departments of other states and of the United States;
    2. Exchange information relating to crime and criminals;
    3. Keep permanent files and records of such information procured or received;
    4. Provide for the scientific investigation of articles used in committing crimes or articles, fingerprints, or bloodstains found at the scene of a crime;
    5. Provide for the testing and identification of weapons and projectiles fired therefrom;
    6. Acquire, collect, classify, and preserve any information which would assist in the identification of any deceased individual who has not been identified after the discovery of such deceased individual;
    7. Acquire, collect, classify, and preserve immediately any information which would assist in the location of any missing person, including any minor, and provide confirmation as to any entry for such a person to the parent, legal guardian, or next of kin of that person and the bureau shall acquire, collect, classify, and preserve such information from such parent, guardian, or next of kin;
    8. Exchange such records and information as provided in paragraphs (6) and (7) of this subsection with, and for the official use of, authorized officials of the federal government, the states, cities, counties, and penal and other institutions. With respect to missing minors, such information shall be transmitted immediately to other law enforcement agencies;
    9. Identify and investigate violations of Article 4 of Chapter 7 of Title 16;
    10. Identify and investigate violations of Part 2 of Article 3 of Chapter 12 of Title 16, relating to offenses related to minors;
    11. Identify and investigate violations of Article 8 of Chapter 9 of Title 16;
    12. Identify and investigate violations of Article 5 of Chapter 8 of Title 16;
    13. Identify and investigate violations of Code Section 16-5-46;
    14. Identify and investigate violations of Article 8 of Chapter 5 of Title 16;
      1. Acquire, collect, analyze, and provide to the board any information which will assist the board in determining a sexual offender's risk assessment classification in accordance with the board's duties as specified in Code Section 42-1-14, including, but not limited to, obtaining:
        1. Incident, investigative, supplemental, and arrest reports from law enforcement agencies;
        2. Records from clerks of court;
        3. Records and information maintained by prosecuting attorneys;
        4. Records maintained by state agencies, provided that any records provided by the State Board of Pardons and Paroles that are classified as confidential state secrets pursuant to Code Section 42-9-53 shall remain confidential and shall not be made available to any other person or entity or be subject to subpoena unless declassified by the State Board of Pardons and Paroles; and
        5. Other documents or information as requested by the board.
      2. As used in this paragraph, the term:
        1. "Board" means the Sexual Offender Registration Review Board.
        2. "Risk assessment classification" means the level into which a sexual offender is placed based on the board's assessment.
        3. "Sexual offender" has the same meaning as set forth in Code Section 42-1-12; and
    15. Attorneys employed by the Legal Division of the bureau may serve at the request of a district attorney, solicitor-general, or United States Attorney in the prosecution of any civil or criminal case within the jurisdiction of such district attorney, solicitor-general, or United States Attorney and, while providing such assistance to such district attorney, solicitor-general, or United States Attorney, such attorneys shall have the same authority and power as an attorney employed by such district attorney, solicitor-general, or United States Attorney.
  2. In addition to the duties provided in subsection (a) of this Code section, the members of the bureau shall have and are vested with the same authority, powers, and duties as are possessed by the members of the Uniform Division of the Department of Public Safety under this title.

(Ga. L. 1937, p. 322, art. 3, § 1; Ga. L. 1941, p. 277, § 4; Ga. L. 1974, p. 109, § 2; Ga. L. 1977, p. 752, § 1; Ga. L. 1982, p. 3, § 35; Ga. L. 1984, p. 690, § 2; Ga. L. 1985, p. 149, § 35; Ga. L. 1996, p. 416, § 9; Ga. L. 2007, p. 283, § 3/SB 98; Ga. L. 2008, p. 601, § 2/SB 388; Ga. L. 2010, p. 1162, § 2/SB 371; Ga. L. 2011, p. 217, § 9/HB 200; Ga. L. 2012, p. 351, § 5/HB 1110; Ga. L. 2012, p. 985, § 1/HB 895; Ga. L. 2013, p. 524, § 3-5/HB 78; Ga. L. 2013, p. 1056, § 3/HB 122; Ga. L. 2020, p. 82, § 2/SB 393.)

The 2020 amendment, effective July 1, 2020, deleted "and" at the end of paragraph (a)(14), substituted "; and" for a period at the end of division (a)(15)(B)(iii), and added paragraph (a)(16).

Cross references.

- Disposition of unclaimed dead bodies, § 31-21-20 et seq.

Authority of director of forensic sciences division to make facilities of division available for post-mortem examinations and autopsies and to authorize licensed physicians or pathologists to act as medical examiners in performing post-mortem examinations or autopsies, § 45-16-22.

Code Commission notes.

- Pursuant to Code Section 28-9-5, in 2012, paragraph (a)(14), as enacted by Ga. L. 2012, p. 985, § 1/HB 895, was redesignated as paragraph (a)(15), "and" was deleted at the end of paragraph (a)(13), and "; and" was substituted for a period at the end of paragraph (a)(14).

Law reviews.

- For annual survey of law on real property, see 62 Mercer L. Rev. 283 (2010). For article on the 2011 amendment of this Code section, see 28 Ga. St. U. L. Rev. 131 (2011). For article, "Crimes and Offenses: Crimes Against the Person," see 28 Ga. St. U. L. Rev. 131 (2011). For annual survey on administrative law, see 64 Mercer L. Rev. 39 (2012).


Investigation of missing persons.

- State proved that the false statement alleged in the indictment was made in a matter within the jurisdiction of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI) because the GBI was actively investigating a missing person case; because two videos contained clues referencing a Georgia missing person and the location of a missing person's body parts in Augusta, and it was then determined that the computer from which the videos were being posted was in Georgia, the jury could reasonably infer that the other missing person cases referenced in the first video would have a Georgia connection, giving the GBI jurisdiction to investigate the cases. Haley v. State, 289 Ga. 515, 712 S.E.2d 838 (2011), cert. denied, U.S. , 133 S. Ct. 60, 183 L. Ed. 2d 711 (2012).

Cited in Pittman v. State, 110 Ga. App. 625, 139 S.E.2d 507 (1964); Interstate Life & Accident Ins. Co. v. Whitlock, 112 Ga. App. 212, 144 S.E.2d 532 (1965); Baxter v. State, 134 Ga. App. 286, 214 S.E.2d 578 (1975); State v. Mulkey, 252 Ga. 201, 312 S.E.2d 601 (1984); Allison v. State, 188 Ga. App. 460, 373 S.E.2d 273 (1988).


Power to contract for district headquarters.

- Director of Georgia Bureau of Investigation has same power to contract with local governments for district headquarters as Commissioner of Public Safety. 1983 Op. Att'y Gen. No. 83-39.

Discovery requests for criminal investigation records of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation should be coordinated with the prosecuting attorney who should be the primary source for determining the response. 1998 Op. Att'y Gen. No. 98-15.

Bureau cannot destroy records pursuant to court order when not party litigant.

- Department (now bureau) is neither authorized nor required to destroy the department's criminal identification records pursuant to an order entered in a case in which the department (now bureau) was not a party litigant. 1970 Op. Att'y Gen. No. 70-158.

Prohibited employment.

- Individual may not be employed by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation Division of Forensic Sciences at the same time that the individual is a county deputy coroner. 1997 Op. Att'y Gen. No. 97-21.


Am. Jur. 2d.

- 63C Am. Jur. 2d, Public Officers and Employees, §§ 227, 229, 237.


- 63 C.J.S., Municipal Corporations, §§ 640 et seq., 646 et seq., 655. 67 C.J.S., Officers and Public Employees, §§ 323, 324.


- Fingerprints, palm prints, or bare footprints as evidence, 28 A.L.R.2d 1115.

Admissibility of bare footprint evidence, 45 A.L.R.4th 1178.

Disclaimer: These codes may not be the most recent version. Georgia may have more current or accurate information. We make no warranties or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained on this site or the information linked to on the state site. Please check official sources.
This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.