FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Answers to general questions that are often received by the Martinsburg Police Department have been listed below as a service to the community. Questions related to legal issues are often complicated and you may need to seek guidance beyond this page. Please do not hesitate to call the Martinsburg Police Department or your attorney if you are unsure whether your situation or question has been adequately addressed by the information below. 

General FAQ

The Martinsburg Police Department is located on the first floor of Martinsburg City Hall, located in downtown Martinsburg at 232 N. Queen St. Martinsburg, WV 25401. We are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

If you need emergency assistance, call 911.
If you have a question or need to notify the police of a non-emergency incident, call (304) 264-2100.
If you have a court-related question (tickets, fines, etc.), call (304) 264-2103.

Police reports should be filed with a police officer in person unless it is physically impossible for you to do so. You can call (304) 264-2100 and request that a police officer responds to your location, or come to the police department any time.

The police department does not issue city business licenses. To obtain a business license, you must visit the business licensing department on the second floor of City Hall.

The Martinsburg Police Department only does fingerprinting in reference to criminal arrests and internal job applications. If you need to be fingerprinted for your employer or other purposes, visit www.identogo.com or call (855) 766-7746.

The Martinsburg Police Department website and official social media accounts are maintained by MPD officers, however these sites are not monitored 24/7 and should NEVER be used to report emergencies or in-progress crimes.

Municipal Court & Police Records

If you need to contact the Martinsburg Municipal Court, call (304) 264-2103.

The Municipal Court in open Monday through Friday, 8am to 5pm and is closed on all government holidays. There is a magistrate, clerks, and a cashier on duty during these hours.

The Martinsburg Municipal Court accepts cash, checks, money orders, VISA, MasterCard, and Discover cards for the payment of criminal/traffic fines and court costs. A 2.95% third-party convenience fee applies to credit card transactions.

Fines cannot be paid online or over the phone. Some fines can be mailed in to the court, however you should call the court at (304) 264-2103 prior to mailing a payment to verify whether or not you are required to appear in person for a particular charge.

Law suits and protective orders are not processed through the Municipal Court. These items are handled by the Berkeley County Magistrate Court located at 380 W. South St. Martinsburg, WV 25401.

If you need to obtain a copy of a police report, call (304) 264-2100 to speak with the records department. There is fee to obtain most reports.

If you have been involved in a vehicle collision, simply provide the police report number to your insurance company and they will obtain the report for you.

Some reports cannot be released due to investigation status or privacy laws.

State & Local Laws

Small, contained cooking and warming fires are permitted on private property within the city of Martinsburg. Yard and garden waste may be burned twice a year, March 15th through March 30th and November 1st through November 15th with certain restrictions as specified in Martinsburg Municipal Code 1501.06.

Click here to read the Martinsburg outdoor burning ordinance.

Locally, concealed weapons permits are issued by the Berkeley County Sheriff's Office. For more information, visit the Berkeley County Council website.

West Virginia State Code does not prevent residents of the state from carrying a handgun on their person so long as that person in not prohibited from possessing a firearm under any other law. You should read the West Virginia state code in reference to carrying a firearm prior to doing so.

Handguns carried in compliance with West Virginia open & concealed carry law may also be transported in a vehicle in that manner.

Rifles and/or hunting weapons may only be transported unloaded. Ammunition should be stored in a separate compartment from the weapon.

The following is a list of SOME of the most common places where firearms are prohibited in the city of Martinsburg. This is not an exhaustive list.

- Any city owned/operated building (City Hall, Fire Station, etc.).
- Any school.
- Courts and other government buildings.
- Any private business or property that states you may not carry a weapon.
- Open carry of firearms is not permitted at public recreation facilities (Rec. Centers, pools, etc.), but lawful concealed carry is permitted.

The West Virginia State Police manage the state sex offender registry. You can view their registry records here.

Martinsburg Municipal Code chapter 545.10 states, "No person, firm, co-partnership or corporation shall, or use or explode any fireworks." You can read the full ordinance here for further explanation of what are considered to be "fireworks."

Martinsburg is fighting an opioid epidemic. We can only be successful by using a multi-faceted strategy of enforcement, treatment, and prevention. These ordinances are a vital tool in shutting down drug houses, reclaiming our neighborhoods from disorder, and improving the quality of life in all Martinsburg communities.

You can read more about the ordinances here.

Traffic Laws

You may not use a cell phone or other electronic communications device, unless the use is accomplished by hands-free equipment under Martinsburg municipal ordinance 356.01.

The code allows for the following three exceptions:
- A law-enforcement officer, a firefighter, an emergency medical technician, a paramedic or the operator of an authorized emergency vehicle in the performance of their official duties.
- A person using an electronic communication device to report to appropriate authorities a fire, a traffic accident, a serious road hazard, or a medical or hazardous materials emergencies.
- The activation or deactivation of hands-free equipment or a function of hands-free equipment.

Martinsburg municipal ordinance 345.02 states:

Every vehicle other than a school bus, motorcycle, motor-driven cycle or moped operated upon a street or highway within this Municipality at any time from sunset to sunrise or during fog, smoke, rain or other unfavorable atmospheric conditions, or at any other time when there is not sufficient light to render clearly discernible persons and vehicles on the street or highway at a distance of 500 feet ahead shall display lighted head lamps and illuminating devices as hereinafter respectively required for different classes of vehicles, subject to exceptions with respect to parked vehicles as provided for in Section 345.07(c). Every school bus, motorcycle, motor-driven cycle and moped shall display lighted head lamps at all times when upon the street or highway.

West Virginia license plates expire on the first day of the month specified on your registration card. On standard license plates, the first character also designates the expiration month. (1=January, 2=February, etc., O=October, N=November, D=December) For example, if your license plate number was 4XX-XXX, your license plate would expire on the first day of April in the year printed on the sticker in the bottom right corner of the plate.

State code requires that any collision with more than $1,000 damage on a public street or highway be reported by law enforcement. If you are unsure of the damage valuation or if you are on public or private property, call the appropriate law enforcement agency.

The Martinsburg Police Department will respond, by request, to accidents with less than $1,000 damage and accidents on private property to facilitate an exchange of driver information and provide a incident number, however we do not complete a full crash investigation under these circumstances.

Martinsburg municipal ordinance 313.03 states that vehicular traffic shall not enter or be crossing the intersection when the red or "stop" signal is exhibited. If you are in any part of an intersection when a traffic light in your direction turns red, you can be ticketed.

Martinsburg municipal ordinance 345.35 states:

A person shall not operate a passenger vehicle on a public street or highway unless the person, any passenger in the back seat under eighteen years of age, and any passenger in the front seat of such passenger vehicle is restrained by a safety belt meeting applicable federal motor vehicle safety standards.

Transporting passengers in the bed of a pickup truck is subject to seat belt law as stated above. A person under the age of 18 can only ride in the back of a pickup truck if there is safety belt meeting applicable federal motor vehicle safety standards available. Anything, including passengers, that is transported in the bed of a pickup truck must be secured to the point where in cannot easily fall out during transport. Sitting up on the side rails or hanging off the side of a truck while on a public road is not permitted.

345.31 CHILD PASSENGER SAFETY DEVICES REQUIRED; CHILD SAFETY SEATS AND BOOSTER SEATS.

Every driver who transports a child under the age of eight years in a passenger automobile, van or pickup truck other than one operated for hire shall, while the motor vehicle is in motion and operated on a street or highway, provide for the protection of the child by properly placing, maintaining and securing the child in a child passenger safety device system meeting applicable federal motor vehicle safety standards; provided, that if a child is under the age of eight years and at least four feet nine inches tall, a safety belt shall be sufficient to meet the requirements of this section.