You are arrested based off of what the officers determine from their investigation. This arrest can take place at a. the scene of the crime or close to it, or b. later at any location, with a warrant. Either way, law enforcement needs "Probable cause (PC)", which requires more than a mere suspicion that a suspect committed a crime, but not an absolute certainty.
Most individuals that are arrested do not expect to be. However, sometimes the arrest is forcible if a warrant is issued.
Once in custody, you will be booked; this can take hours. This process entails you being asked (typically by a police officer) for your basic identification information, such as home address, birth date, a photo, and fingerprints. You may be interviewed, interrogated, or asked to aid in another aspect of the investigation.
After booking, the method of release is determined by either the police, judge, or bail commissioner depending on the circumstance of the arrest. If you're lucky, your bond will be a PTA or non-surety bond, which means you get out of jail for free. If not, you will be assigned a bond amount which is called a cash or surety bond. This is where BailCo and our bondsmen come in. You will have the option of either posting bond yourself or via a friend or family member paying the bond amount in cash (cash bond), or by by contacting a bondsman (surety bond) to arrange for release. A cash bond is paid in full and is "refunded" after the case is concluded. However, the court often takes some of the money. A surety bond is posted by a bonding company with a 7% to 10% premium, depending on the bond amount. This is paid to the bondsman as a fee for their service.
If the bond is posted, you will be given a court date for your arraignment. The arraignment will be scheduled for the next business day if it's a domestic-related arrest, or approximately 14 days from the arrest date. This is by far the best option if a bond is needed. It allows you to get cleaned up, be prepared, and put your best foot forward in court. Plus, this will have the least impact on your other life obligations such as family and work.
In the case of being transported directly from the police department, the defendant will then appear in court on the next business day for the arraignment. At the arraignment, the defendant is advised of several constitutional rights by the presiding judge and is required to enter a plea. Usually the defendant is advised to plea "not guilty," after which the matter is set for a date for the pre-trial hearings.
During the arraignment, the judge will set bond. If they do not have a record and the case is not violent in nature, then most likely the defendant will be released on a written promise to appear on all subsequent court dates.
A judge will sometimes order a bond with or without surety. If the defendant fails to appear then their bond could be revoked, and they may be held in custody without bond. The judge may require a security bond; the defendant has the option of posting 7 to 10 percent (depending on size) of the bond with BailCo; as bondsmen we assure the defendant’s appearance in court, and the defendant is released. If needed, you can do a payment plan. Click here to calculate the deposit amount for your bond.
If a defendant is held in custody after arraignment, the judge must review the bond status after 45 days.
It can take a very long time to get to the end. Many times it will take a year, or more for more complex cases. Once there is either a disposition, sentencing or more commonly a plea bargain, the bond is terminated and you no longer have any obligation to BailCo; however, you may have various obligations to the state.