How can I find out whether a warrant has been issued for my arrest?
Call a qualified bonding company. Most reputable bonding establishments will provide this service through an online search for you free of charge. If your bondsman does not offer this service, or if it is for an out-of-county warrant, contact the Sheriff’s Department for your county of concern.
I received a letter indicating that a warrant has been issued for my arrest. What does this mean?
This means that charges have been filed on you and you are subject to being picked up by the police at any time of the day or night, at work or at home, on the arrest warrant. Contact a qualified attorney, who will have strong contacts with reputable bondsmen to assist you in posting bail.
Will I always be notified by law enforcement that there is a warrant for my arrest?
Not necessarily. The primary determinants in this are the discretion of the law enforcement agents involved and the case facts. Often the first indication our clients have that there is a warrant for their arrest is a letter they receive from us or from a bondsman. Some are not so fortunate and are surprised by a knock on the door.
Can the police kick my door in and search my house for me in order to arrest me on the warrant?
Yes. There are also a number of other circumstances in which the police may “break in” and look for you, with or without a warrant, such as the mere suspicion of misdemeanor domestic violence.
What will happen if my relatives tell the police they do not know where I am?
While we can’t say what will happen in every instance such as this, it is possible that they will be charged with Harboring a Fugitive if they are not telling the truth.
What is the best way to handle having a warrant for arrest?
If bail has already been set, you should turn yourself in and post a non-arrest bond as soon as possible. In this way you avoid being actually placed in jail. There are several advantages to this as opposed to waiting to be picked up on the warrant:
– You avoid the embarrassment of getting arrested in front of friends or co-workers.
– You avoid the anxiety and worry of wondering if you will be arrested.
– You save time – usually only 3 to 4 hours in the Sheriff’s Department – as opposed to 16 to 20 hours when arrested.
– You avoid setting foot inside the actual jail.
– You make a more favorable impression on the Judge than if you had waited until police arrested you.
What is meant by a “To Be” warrant?
This is a warrant on which the defendant has not yet been arrested but is “to be” arrested.
If I am arrested and innocent, shouldn’t I talk to the police? I can explain everything.
In general, no. If the police are asking you questions, it is because you are a suspect. If you are a suspect, the police are not your friend. Remain silent and stifle the urge to explain everything. If you talk in an attempt to exonerate yourself they may be able to use your statements or a part of them as evidence against you. Let them obtain their own evidence to charge you.
If I am arrested and guilty, shouldn’t I talk to the police; they promised me leniency if I would cooperate.
In general, no. Only a prosecutor can make a deal for leniency. Police and their agents make promises of leniency that they have no power to keep in order to coerce you into giving a confession. Ignore both their promises and their threats.
What should I say to the police if I am arrested?
Other than giving them identification information such as your name it is best never to voluntarily give the police information. State politely, “I wish to speak with an attorney.”
Can I be arrested in my own home without a warrant on a mere accusation?
Yes, depending on the circumstances of your case; consult a qualified attorney regarding the specifics of your situation.
How long do the police have after arresting me to charge me with a crime or release me?
Law enforcement officials have 24 hours following an arrest to take you before a magistrate for a Probable Cause Hearing on a misdemeanor; for a felony arrest, the time limit is 48 hours following arrest. Laws change frequently; consult a qualified attorney.
The officer did not read me my Miranda rights when he arrested me. Can you therefore get the charges dropped?
Not necessarily. Advising you of your Miranda rights is not required by law prior to an arrest or prior to the asking of routine questions such as your name and preliminary questioning by police before you have become a suspect.
It is necessary prior to custodial police interrogation, which is limited under the U.S. Constitution, the Texas State Constitution and the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure (Art. 38.22). If you have been interrogated (in the legal sense of the term) without having been Mirandized, even then this does not mean that the charges will be dropped. What this means is that your answers, statements, and admissions – with a knowledgeable and qualified attorney – may be kept from being introduced into court as evidence against you through a Motion to Suppress. But the prosecution can still proceed against you, even if your unlawfully-obtained statement is suppressed, unless this unlawfully-obtained statement is the only evidence that law enforcement has against you.
If I am given a Court-appointed attorney while in jail, can I still retain my own private attorney?
Yes. Your retained private attorney will file a Motion to Substitute as the new attorney of record and the Court-appointed will be discharged from further duty in your case.
Note: Clients have given their permission for any testimonials presented here.