In the State of Texas, Bond or Bail Jumping is a serious criminal offense.
Running out on a bond carries civil consequences as well as criminal consequences. One example of a civil consequence associated with bond jumping is the loss of any collateral used to post the bond, and another being additional jail time.
Failure to Appear in criminal court is a serious situation which will likely result in the residing judge issuing a warrant for your arrest.
Police and Bounty Hunters Easily Find Bond Jumpers
Nowadays, police departments and sheriff’s offices use a number of methods to find offenders who have a warrant for their arrest. The most effective to way to find a person with a warrant issued for their arrest is via traffic related infractions.
With police drones and high tech license plate scanners being used more and more in Houston, avoiding the reach of Houston/Harris County area law enforcement can prove to be a challenge.
There is also the possibility that a licensed bondsman or bounty hunter may hunt you down.
Whether or not the criminal offense of jumping a bond is classified as a misdemeanor or a felony largely depends on the originating crime.
The Best Way To Handle A Bench Warrant
During my 20+ years of experience as a criminal defense attorney in Houston, I have found that the best way to handle bond jumping cases is before you are captured by law enforcement. Being a fugitive from justice who ends up being apprehended by law enforcement usually translates into far more harsh treatment than if you dealt with the court, and the judge issuing the warrant, before you get captured.
By working within the law, it gives me more leverage as your criminal defense lawyer to execute proven defenses, and strategies for bond jumping cases. Maybe we can even get the warrant lifted and the court date reset.
Regardless of the situation, Houston criminal defense attorney Jack B. Carroll is willing to discuss your case and let you know what you are up against.
On The Run? Call Me at 713-228-4607
If you’ve jumped bond or violated bond agreements in Houston, and need the advice of an experienced criminal defense attorney in Houston, Call Jack B. Carroll as soon as possible.
Board Certified Houston criminal lawyer Jack B. Carroll may be able to argue a valid reason as to why you missed court in the first place, possibly get you a 2nd chance, and have your bond reinstated.
About Bail, and Bond Amounts
In the State of Texas, courts enjoy the freedom of setting bail (with no standard limitations) as long as the bond amount isn’t abusive, excessive, or otherwise extreme. Three points taken into consideration when it comes to assigning a bail amount for a felony, or misdemeanor criminal offense would be the nature of the offense, the seriousness of the crime, and the affordability of the bail amount.
Most of the time, offenders aren’t forced to pay the full amount of the bond set by the courts. Usually, a licensed Texas Bail Bondsman will pay for the entire Bail Bond as long as you can pay 10% of the total bond amount.
For extremely high bond amounts, Houston’s Bail Bondsman will accept collateral like vehicles or property to cover the bond.
If the bondsman has trouble making contact with you or finding you, or otherwise thinks you have violated terms of the bond agreement, law in the State of Texas allows the bondsman to request an arrest warrant from the presiding judge. You may end up back in jail, and may lose any collateral put up for the bond.
Penalties for Failure to Appear in Court in Texas
Additional Class C Misdemeanor charges will apply if the original charge was a Class C with potential fines of up to $500.
Additional Class A Misdemeanor charges will apply if the original charge was a Class A or B misdemeanor which is also punishable by up to one year in a county jail.
Additional 3rd Degree Felony charges will apply if the original charge was a felony with potential added jail time of 2 to 10 years in a state prison.
Failure to appear in court may also prompt the presiding judge to order a forfeiture of the bond which means the bondsman would lose the money risked for your release from jail. If this happens, you know owe the bondsman.