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Mountain View Police Department
1000 Villa Street
Mountain View, CA 94041

Directions & Map

General Business:
8 a.m. - 5 p.m. (Mon.-Fri.)

Walk-in Crime Reports:
7 a.m. - 7 p.m. (7 days)

Submit your questions, suggestions, compliments,concerns, or track your existing request online.

Police FAQ

This page has all police-related FAQs. If your question is not answered here, contact us via email or phone: 650/903-6344.

I would like to have the Police Service Dog Program give a demonstration to my group or organization.        
The Mountain View Police Department Police Service Dog Program must be diligent in promoting a safe environment for our community, preventing issues that may expose the City of Mountain View to unnecessary liability, and be fiscally responsible with our budget. Keeping those responsibilies in mind, we do not give public demonstrations in an uncontrolled environment such as a homeowner's association gathering, block party event, etc. We do not give public demonstrations to any group or organization not a part of the Mountain View community. For any questions you can contact Unit Coordinator Sergeant Dale Messimer at (650) 903-6344 ext. 1486.

I was the victim of an online scam and I believe the suspect lives in Mountain View.  What do I do?
If the suspect in your case used a Google Gmail email account, it will show their IP address as having originated in Mountain View.  That is because Google's headquarters is located in Mountain View; it does not mean the suspect lives in this city.  Please consult with your local police department.  Online scams are difficult to investigate since the suspect(s) can be based anywhere in the world.  Please report the scam to the Federal Trade Commission on their website at www.ftc.gov.  

My car was towed but I contest the validity of the authority to store the vehicle.  What can I do?
Pursuant to 22852 CVC, the registered or legal owner, or their agent, may request a post-storage hearing to review the validity and authority to store the vehicle.  The request may be made to the Department in person, by mail or by telephone but must be made within 10 days of the date the "Notice of Stored Vehicle" form was mailed to the owner.  Please call 650-903-6741 for further information or to request a hearing.

My car was towed/impounded.  How do I get it back?
Instructions in English and Spanish will be sent to the address of the registered owner of the vehicle.  In general, the registered owner must come in to the Department to obtain a vehicle release.  The registration must be current and the owner must provide identification.  A $150 fee is charged by the Department, which is in addition to whatever fees the storage yard charges.   If the owner does not have a valid driver's license, a person with a valid license must accompany the owner to the Department to obtain the release.

Can I put tinted windows on my car?
Yes, but not in direct view of the driver (windshield and front door windows).

Usually window tinting installed at the factory conforms to state law. Windows behind the driver, including the rear windshield can be tinted. However, you may wish to consider safety. In particular, if the rear windshield is opaque, it's difficult to drive safely in reverse.

Can I ride along with a K9 officer?    
Unfortunately, due to issues associated with the individual K9 vehicle's set-up, ride-alongs specifically with a K9 officer are not feasible.

Do I need a permit for an audible-only alarm? Do I still pay false alarm fines?
Yes, a permit is required for all alarms. Yes, if police respond to your audible-only alarm without cause, you may incur a fine per the schedule above.

How do I get my car back after it's been towed?

Towed from private property: contact the tow company, per posted signs, which are required for private-property towing.

Towed from public parking zones: registered owner must come to the police department, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. (7 days a week). Bring a valid drivers license and be the release fee ($150). The department accepts cash, check or money order.

Don't know who towed your car? Look for signs. If you don't find any towing signs, contact the police department: 650/903-6395.

How do I get started as a reserve officer?
Attending the POST Modular Academy is a good beginning. Classes are held at Evergreen Community College and College of San Mateo. You don't need to have an agency affiliation to attend. You will need to attend all three POST Modular Academy courses before applying for MVPD.

How do I notify MVPD of changes in alarm permit responders or their phone numbers?
Submit another alarm permit application or go to CryWolf to update responder info on-line. No fee is required until your next annual renewal.

How do I obtain a copy of a police report?
Visit or call the police department. There is a $.25/page fee for copies. You may request reports by telephone or email, but you must come into the Department in person with photo ID in order to pick up your copy.

All police report requests are subject to review and release of this information is made in accordance with the California Public Records Act.

How do I obtain fingerprints for employment or immigration?
The Mountain View Police Department offers fingerprinting services to members of the public.  Fingerprinting is required for such things as employment, license, certification, permits, volunteerism and adoption purposes. 

The Department charges a service fee of $20.00 in addition to any applicable California Department of Justice (currently $32.00) and/or FBI fees (currently $17.00).  This brings the total cost of fingerprinting to $69.00.  Appointments are available Mon. - Thur. from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.  Community members may also walk in without an appointment on Thurs. from 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.

Appointments are available by calling the Records Division at 650-903-6344.  Community members must have a valid form of US or foreign-issued government ID as well as a Live Scan form provided by the agency requesting Live Scan service.

How do I resolve a fix-it ticket?
1. Resolve the problem, usually documents (registration, license or proof of insurance) or vehicle equipment.

2. Visit the police department (7 a.m. to 7 p.m., 7 days a week) and ask for an officer to inspect your vehicle or documents.

3. An officer will ensure that your documents or vehicle has been fixed and will sign off on your citation. (In some document situations, the DMV may sign off your citation.)

4. If you are a resident of Mountain View, you will not be charged for a "fix-it ticket" sign off even if the ticket was issued by another police department.  If you are NOT a resdient of Mountain View, you will be charged $25 to have your ticket signed-off, regardless of what police department issued the ticket. 

5. Mail the signed citation back to the court.

For more information, see: Handling Tickets or Santa Clara County Court.

How does the dog stay cool in the car on hot days?
Although the K9 and handler work as a team, there are occasions when the dog is not required and must remain inside the vehicle. During these times, the vehicle's air conditioner is left on and the windows rolled up to cool the interior. Each handler carries a monitor on his/her belt which gives a constant reading of the interior vehicle temperature and sounds an alarm if a predetermined interior temperature setting is exceeded. 

How long can I park my car on a public street?
On public roads, a vehicle must be moved from at least 1,000 feet (approx. 2/10ths of a mile) every 72 hours. If a vehicle is parked longer, the police department may tow it, at the owner's expense.

I got a traffic ticket, but I didn't receive anything in the mail. How do I know what to pay or if I can go to traffic school?
Even if you don't receive anything in the mail, you're still obligated to pay the fine or otherwise respond to the citation by the date on the citation. The back of the citation has simple instructions detailing your choices, including the payment address.

Traffic school eligibility criteria are defined by the court.

For more information, see: Handling Tickets or Santa Clara County Court.

I need a notarized letter stating that I have no police record for immigration. How do I obtain this letter? Can I arrange to have someone else pick it up for me?
You can obtain a letter of "no police record" at the police department front desk (7 a.m. to 7 p.m., 7 days a week). You will need to bring your own notary public to certify the letter. Note: your notary must accept our staff member's police ID card instead of a driver's license.

Be sure to bring your driver's license, passport, or other photo identification with your full name on it. There's an $40 charge, payable in cash, check or credit card (MasterCard or VISA only).

Another person can obtain this for you. However, please call us first at: 650/903-6344. The requirements vary, depending on your relationship to the person picking up the letter for you.


I would like to donate canine bulletproof vests to your Police Service Dog Program.
Our police service dogs do not wear bulletproof vests due to the weight of the vest, added restrictions of movement, and overheating issues for the dog.  We do appreciate your concern for the safety of our police service dogs.

I would like to donate money, food or other items to the Police Service Dog Program.
The Mountain View Police Department Police Service Dog Program has an annual budget for food, veterinarian services, and other supplies. Each police service dog handler tailors his dog's diet to each individual dog's nutritional needs. We appreciate your generosity and community support, but we don not accept donations to our program.

If I spot an abandoned vehicle on a public street, what should I do?
Call the Abandoned Vehicle Hotline: 650/903-6358. Provide vehicle description, license plate number (if any) and location. It's also helpful to leave your name and number.

Is there a Neighborhood Watch in my area?
Mountain View has more than 100 Neighborhood Watch groups. To find out if there's one in your area, contact the Community Action and Information Unit at 650/903-6418.

Weapons laws don't apply to toy weapons, do they?
Even toy weapons have some legal restrictions. While they may be carried on your person, it is illegal to brandish them, which means to display or wave about. They should never be used as if they were real weapons, especially in situations in which they may be misconstrued as real weapons.

Never allow anyone to think your toy weapon is a real weapon. They may respond with real force. Teach children with toy weapons about weapons safety.

What does a K9 officer do?
K9 officers perform the same basic functions as a regular patrol officer (write tickets, handle calls-for-service, make arrests), but are also utilized for more specific calls such as tracking, building seraches, and narcotics detection.

What does the police department do about graffiti?
Notify MVPD (650/903-6395), so we can take photos. Often graffiti arrestees are responsible for many cases. It's crucial that we have the photos for prosecution. In some cases, property owners can receive restitution.

City code requires that graffiti be removed within 10 days. The city is responsible for removing it from public property. However, on private property, the property owner is responsible for removing graffiti.

What qualifies as an abandoned vehicle?
Any vehicle that has not moved from the same spot for over 72 hours, or is visibly inoperable because it's missing essential parts, such as wheels, transmission or engine, may be considered abandoned. If it is parked on a public roadway, it may be towed at the owner's expense.

What sort of duties can I work as a reserve officer?
Level III (trainee) Reserve Officers generally work patrol duties while in training. Level II Reserve Officers can make arrests and perform other officer duties with supervision. Level I Reserve Officers can do anything regular police officers do, including solo patrol work. Level II and Level I Reserves also work a variety of paid special event and private hire details.

What special skills do the dogs have?
Currently, the dogs are cross trained and proficient in tracking, searching, and narcotics detection. Bomb detection is a specific skill typically handled by outside Federal agencies.

When do I have to report a traffic accident, and to whom?
If there are no injuries, a police report is optional. However, if there is more than $750 worth of property damage, you must report the accident to the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). Ask your insurance company if they notify the DMV for you. Some do.

Whenever there are injuries, even minor injuries, you must report an accident to the police department. However, it's only necessary to get a police report at the scene if there are major injuries or fatalities. In either case, we'll notify the DMV for you.

DMV Accidents

Where can I allow my dog to run off-leash?
There is a Dog Park specifically designed for dogs where they may run free and play in a controlled area and socialize with other dogs and their owners off leash.  It is located at the corner of Shoreline Boulevard and North Road.  While there are also designated areas in some parks for dog training, these areas require a training permit and the training permit does not allow a dog to run or play off leash.

Where do I get more information on the hiring process?
Please visit our recruiting site at joinmvpd.com for more info!

While driving my car, I struck and damaged property (other than another car). What do I do?
Stop your vehicle at the nearest location that will not impede traffic or jeopardize the safety of other motorists. You are responsible for locating the property owner and providing the following information:
1. Your (driver's) name, address and phone number.
2. For the vehicle you were driving, the vehicle owner's name, address and phone number.

For damage to city property, telephone non-emergency incidents: 650/903-6395.

Who can go on a police ride-along?
Anyone 14 years old or older, who lives, works or attends school in Mountain View, or is an applicant for a position with MVPD. You must also have no outstanding warrants and no felony convictions. A criminal history check will be run before the ride-along.

Who do I contact about Internet fraud?

If an unauthorized person uses your credit card or card number to obtain products, this is credit card fraud. It is a criminal matter, which should be reported to the police: 650/903-6395.

Additionally, if someone uses information about you to obtain credit, money, products or services, this is identity theft. It is a criminal matter, which must be reported at the police department so your identity can be verified.

Who owns the dog?
The dog is actually purchased and owned by the City of Mountain View, but lives at home with their assigned handler.