Montgomery County Criminal Defense Attorney - What do I do if I was arrested over Christmas?
Montgomery County Criminal Defense Attorney - Brian Foley
If you or someone you know was arrested over Christmas for DWI, Assault Family Member, or some other offense the first thing you'll need to do is figure out how to get out of jail? How do you get out of jail over Christmas?
When someone is arrested in Texas they are brought before a Judge or "magistrate" typically within 24 hours for a misdemeanor and 48 hours for a Felony. In Montgomery County all cases are brought to have an Article 15.17 hearing. Article 15.17 is a part of the Code of Criminal Procedure which requires the judge to review the charges against you and determine if there is probable cause to continue to hold you in jail, set a bond, and inform you of your right to an attorney.
The first person to set you bond in Montgomery County is the District Attorney's Office. They make a bond recommendation and you can employ a bondman to bond you out prior to going to the Article 15.17 hearing unless the case involves family violence or some other issue that the District Attorney's office has flagged to require you to go to court. If you were assigned a PR bond by the District Attorney's office then you may be released from jail and given a court date. This is typical in Misdemeanor cases where there was no violence. For example if you were arrested for possession of marihuana in Montgomery County then you may be given a PR bond. PR stands for "personal recognizance" and it just means that you promise to go to court. If you fail to appear in court on the date given to you when you are released from jail then you will have a warrant filed for your arrest and you will have to go through the jail and release process again. Only this time the bond in Montgomery County will be raised to $10,000. In other counties this amount and process differs even though the same legal rules control the process in all Texas jurisdictions.
Once you have made it through PC court and have been given a bond, then you can employ a bondsman to "bond you out." You may have heard bond called "bail." They are used interchangeably and mean the same thing. It is money that you pay to be released from jail. Once you are bonded out and back in the free world then it is time to find a lawyer.
You should look for someone familiar with the court system that you are being prosecuted in and someone who has legal experience and knowledge. You should also pick someone who make you feel comfortable and that you can trust. You are going to be faced with lots of difficult decisions to make during the process. You have to be represented by someone you can believe and trust to advise you on these difficult choices. And you need someone who can fight for your legal rights to be protected.
Christmas has more DWI and Family Violence offenses than other days of the year because there is an increase in depression, anger, resentment, and other precursors to offenses. Explaining and understanding these motives and processes can help get you the best outcome and explain how a good person had a bad day or Christmas.
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