Finding out there is a warrant for your arrest in California can be a stressful revelation to say the least. However, before you start panicking, you should know that a bench warrant and arrest warrant are not the same. Depending on your criminal history, you may have a criminal warrant out for your arrest. If you fail to pay a fine or appear before a judge regarding another matter, you may be issued a bench warrant.
Regardless of the type of warrant you think may be issued; you must contact a skilled Monterey criminal defense lawyer. Your attorney can assess your case, find out exactly what is going on, and guide you through the necessary legal steps that lie ahead.
What is an arrest warrant in California?
Police may arrest you with or without a warrant. If you get arrested without a warrant, chances are police observed you committing a crime — driving drunk, public intoxication, buying drugs, etc. If police suspect you of committing a crime outside the presence of law enforcement, they make seek a warrant for your arrest. Ultimately, after reviewing evidence, a judge will determine if a warrant for your arrested should be issued.
Bench warrants are typically issued when people violate the rules set by the court. In most cases, this means a person failed to show up to a court date. If a judge issues a bench warrant to have you brought before them, you must take the matter seriously. Remember, police have the right to detain you and bring you before the judge who issued the warrant.
Steps to take
If you think there may be a bench or arrest warrant out for you, follow these steps:
- Verify online — Today, you can do almost anything online, including verify whether you have an outstanding warrant. First, determine the county where you want to search if you have a warrant. Next, visit the Sheriff’s department website for that county and browse for warrant information. You can also use a third-party online service.
- Get a lawyer — If you determine that there is a warrant out for you, you must contact a lawyer. Your attorney will advise you on what to do next, protect your rights, and help you navigate through the legal system.
With your lawyer’s help you can contact law enforcement and arrange a time to turn yourself in. This will show the court that you are a responsible person who is willing to cooperate with the legal process.
Contact California criminal defense attorney today
Giuliano Law is dedicated to defending clients throughout Hollister, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Monterey, and San Benito counties. For more information about our services or to discuss your case with an experienced defense lawyer, call (831) 257-8685 or contact us online.