Criminal Defense, Family Law, and Mediation Services
www.kellyhigginslegal.com The Law Office of Kelly Higgins 512.839.3343
It’s a shock to learn that your loved one has been arrested. If you’re here because someone you care about has been arrested, you can call me at 512-839-3343 to talk about how to bring them home.
How To Be Arrested
There are several ways to be arrested, some better than others. In all cases, being polite helps.
The best way to be arrested is to have a lawyer when an arrest warrant is issued. An active warrant isn’t a disaster if you know about it. A lawyer can approach the court for a bond before the police come to a person’s home or place of business to execute the warrant. With the bond pre-arranged, the person can surrender peacefully at the jail, and be booked and released in time for dinner. With a lawyer, you are much more in control of the impact of arrest on your life.
The other ways are all worse. In one, police arrive at your home or business with an arrest warrant. They are probably shouting and causing a serious commotion, they have guns in their hands, and everyone there is alarmed and frightened. They locate you and take you into custody. They search the area they found you in and seize any incriminating evidence they find. Your family, your neighbors, or your co-workers see you in the worst possible light. Even though you are being polite, you are painfully handcuffed and marched to a police car in front of everyone. This might have been avoided with a lawyer.
Another way to be arrested is to have an outstanding warrant, whether for a serious crime or for unpaid traffic tickets. An outstanding warrant is a raincloud over your head, following you everywhere, that bursts the first time a police officer asks to see your identification. Wherever you are when this storm hits, expect your immediate vicinity, the car you are driving, and your person to be thoroughly searched. You are painfully handcuffed and placed in a police car. You are going directly to jail. Be polite. Be quiet. You need a lawyer. Try to get Kelly Higgins at 512-839-3343.
The last way to get arrested is to appear to commit some offense that a police officer witnesses while it’s happening, or which a witness tells the officer about immediately afterwards. The most common charges in this type of arrest are DWI, Assault, and Theft. The officer doesn’t need a warrant for this type of arrest. He can make the arrest and then complete a Probable Cause Affidavit which explains to a judge why the officer made the arrest. If the judge believes the officer had a probable cause, he will approve the arrest, and the arrestee will wait in jail for magistration to learn what his bond requirements are. This arrestee also needs a lawyer.
In any of the above scenarios, the arrested person should politely decline to answer any questions, and should ask to see a lawyer as soon as possible. The officer will not be offended, and it will not make the person look guilty. A well behaved arrestee can generally rely on his Constitutional Rights without any repercussions. Police officers have sworn an oath to protect and defend these rights. Being polite helps.
Arrests for DWI are always unexpected. In most cases, the arrested person will have to wait to be magistrated by a judge before release is possible. During magistration, the judge will advise the arrestee of his rights, will explain the charges, and will set a bond amount. Once a bond amount is set by the judge, the arrested person can post bond in one of the forms discussed below. Large cities may have a judge available 24 hours a day, but most smaller towns will magistrate people arrested the previous night around 9 AM. This is the usual practice in Hays County.
It’s important to note that with an attorney on the job, jail release can be significantly faster. An attorney can waive magistration, and if a judge is available, a bond may be possible even outside business hours.
How to Get Out of Jail : Bond
There are several ways to get out of jail. The most favorable method is a Personal Bond, which is the defendant’s promise to appear in court as ordered or pay the underlying amount of the bond. This is the lowest cost method of release. The involvement of an attorney can increase the chance of getting a Personal Bond, and can make the process much quicker. This can often be done even before arrest. Why wait in jail?
If a Personal Bond cannot be obtained, usually the full bond amount must be deposited with the sheriff’s office. A person can either pay the full amount, which will be returned once the case is over, or hire a bail bondsman, usually for about 10% of the full bond amount. Unfortunately, that money is not returned; it’s the bail bondsman’s to keep. In either case, the arrestee and any co-signers are liable for the full amount of the bond.
What is the quickest way out of jail?
Call Kelly Higgins at 512-839-3343.