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Bada Bing Bail Bonds
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Once again I get a problematic phone call this morning concerning Houston bail bonds.
A woman called me from Austin and said that her husband went to jail in Austin for a criminal charge out of Harris County. He was charged with a misdemeanor theft by check and his bond was set at $500.00. She put up a cash bond in Austin and he was released from custody in Austin.
What they were unaware of is what happens next. I have never worked for the Harris County Justice System or any other County so I cannot speak with authority on the exact logistics of how it all works, however it goes something like this.
Once the bail bond was posted in Travis County (Austin), then it is up to Austin to notify Harris County that a bail bond has been posted so that the case can then be put on a court docket in Harris County. The person that got out of jail, (the defendant), can then make court appearances until the case is finally disposed of; sounds simple enough.
However, the woman and her husband contacted Harris County to find out when he would be going to court and they were told that according to Harris County he still had an open warrant for his arrest.
The breakdown in communication between the Travis County Sheriff’s Department and the Harris County Sheriff’s Department falls somewhere in the Fugitive Division. Some kind of communication between the two Sheriff’s Departments has to take place before Harris County acknowledges that a bail bond was posted. I do not know if this communication is done through computers or some other form but for some reason it seems to take more than just putting up a bail bond in another county and (voila) everybody everywhere knows a bail bond was posted.
What is also unknown by most people is how quickly the courts in each individual county in Texas docket their criminal cases. Where it may take months to receive a court date in some counties in Harris County cases are docketed very quickly. In this particular case the defendant’s court date was docketed in Harris County 12 days after the bond was posted in Travis County.
Had the person been arrested in Harris County the initial court date for arraignment would have been set for 5 days if the person had posted a bail bond. If the person does not post a bail bond then the case is typically set on a jail docket for the very next day and if on a weekend the next day court is in session.
To further complicate things or maybe to expedite things or in order to protect the rights of the accused or for whatever the reasons are a criminal defendant will typically go before a 24 hour judge in the jail prior to any other court proceedings. None of these circumstances mattered in the case because the defendant was arrested in a different county and posted a bond in that county.
What does matter is that because the defendant and his wife had no idea whatsoever as to how any of this works he missed his court date. Furthermore, because the defendant and his wife were unaware of how any of this works they did not know to file an answer to the lawsuit which initiated because of the bond forfeiture that had occurred when the defendant missed his court date.
Consequently, the defendant had another warrant issued for his arrest and the $500.00 cash bond that his wife placed with Travis County was swallowed up by Harris County and gone forever. And, additionally they may receive a bill in the mail from Harris County for over two hundred dollars in court cost because the of the law suit that was filed to take their $500.00 cash bond after he failed to appear in court.
While all of this is going on the defendant and his wife are under the assumption that sooner or later Harris County will simply notify them of a court date eventually. Truthfully, I have no idea if they ever received any notification of any kind or if Harris County gives any kind of notification in cases like this but according to the defendant’s wife they never received anything.
Two months go by and the defendant is rearrested again in Travis County for the new warrant that was issued when he missed his court date that he knew nothing about. And, his bail bond had been doubled in amount from $500.00 to $1000.00.
I am not advocating one or the other but if the wife had made a bail bond with a bail bond company in Travis County this probably would not have happened. However, it is very possible for a bail bondsman in Travis County to error and have close the same thing occur. If she had posted a bail bond with a company in Harris County there would have been no room for error.
And, even though this would have been the most inconvenient route for her to go instead of putting up a cash bond she and her husband would have known his court date. She would not have lost $500.00 with the possibility of being sued additionally, and her husband would not be in jail with a $1000.00 bond.

Its Labor Day weekend and I just want to remind everybody that the police are going to be out there doing their job, and that I will be right here doing mine.
Have fun, be safe, and eat some bbq for me.
Jack


The cost goes up for City of Houston traffic ticket warrants  if you ignore them.
If you miss your court date with the City of Houston Municipal court an additional charge of failure to appear is typically added on within 10 days. If you continue to ignore your warrants another additional 30% is added on after 60 days. A bail bond is a very cheap alternative with the added benefit of not having to worry about being pulled over and being taken to jail and then paying the additional cost of getting your car out of the impound lot. Call us today and find out how easy and affordable it is so the cost doesn’t keep going up and up.

But how can I be arrested again?
I was arrested and served my time. (False)

Just because you were arrested and taken to jail does not mean that all of your warrants were removed.

This usually occurs when someone is taken to the County Jail.
If you have County Tickets meaning you were ticketed by a Harris County Constable, a Sheriff’s Deputy or a DPS Officer. And if you are arrested by one of the above law enforcement officers and taken directly to the Harris County Jail then yes you get credit for time served for those tickets and the typical time frame for release is within 24 hours.

 However, if you have tickets anyplace else you are not given credit and Harris County will not hold you until the other police department come to pick you up. If they are there to pick you up then Harris County will release you to them and you will be taken to their jail. If they are not their waiting for you Harris County will release you with open warrants.

This happens all the time and people are released from Harris County thinking that all of their traffic tickets have been cleared up. Each individual city (Municipality) has its own court and its own police department, so if you have a traffic warrant with the City of Houston or the City of Bellaire for example then you must appear in their court to take care of your warrants. And if you are released from Harris County and they were not there to pick you up then you still have open warrants with that court and you are subject to arrest all over again by any police officer in the state of Texas.

Posting a non-arrest bail bond for traffic tickets in the Harris County – Houston area is easy and inexpensive. Don’t drive around with open warrants.

I received a late night call about an individual that had been arrested for traffic warrants with the City of Houston. The caller wanted advice about whether they should post a bail bond or wait until the following morning because the person was scheduled to go to court. They were under the impression that the person may be getting released after court and if not then they indicated that they would want post a bail bond.
There are actually several possible outcomes if a person is left in jail waiting to appear in court the following morning.
If the person pleads guilty then the person could be released for time served or the person could be given a fine that could either be paid in full so that the person can be immediately released or the person would receive credit towards the fine each time the clock strikes midnight until the fine is paid in full. Whether a person is released for time served or detained until the fine is discharged is determined by jail population which changes periodically throughout each day. Once a person has been found guilty a bail bond is no longer a possibility.
If a person pleads not guilty then they are reset to appear in court the following day. A bail bond can be posted before the next court date.
If the person remains in custody to appear the next day then their case could be dismissed or they could be found guilty. If dismissed they are immediately released if they are fined then the process is the same as already stated above.
I hope this was helpful information.
Jack

I made a bail bond today for someone that went to jail for felony charge of evading arrest with a motor vehicle. They had an open warrant for their arrest for a traffic ticket. They were being pulled over by the police and because they knew they had a traffic warrant they chose to drive the extra two blocks to their driveway so that the car would not get towed away. Consequently instead of being arrested for a class c misdemeanor or possibly even let go and warned about taking care of their traffic warrant they were arrested and charged with a felony. Everyone needs to be aware that no matter what the reason is if you are being stopped by a police officer you must stop otherwise you will (always) be charged with evading arrest. 

We would like to wish everyone a safe and happy 4th of July.

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Thank you for coming to our Google business page.Our customers frequently ask us how the bail bond process works. Give us a call anytime we are happy to explain and answer questions about anything concerning bail bonds in Houston. We also encourage you to go to our website where we provide detailed information about bail bonds in Houston.

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