If you have an active warrant for your arrest in California, or in any other state for that matter, the police can arrest you at any time, in any place. This can result in you being arrested at your job in front of your co-workers, at home in front of your family, or while driving with friends in the vehicle. To avoid the embarrassment and other negative consequences of being arrested with an open warrant it is best to contact an experienced California warrants attorney to handle the issue first.
There are several reasons why you might have an open arrest warrant, including:
- Open investigation – while some arrests are made at the scene of the crime, such as a driving under the influence case, many are only made after a lengthy investigation by law enforcement. When an investigation turns up a suspect, a police officer will ask for an arrest warrant based on probable cause that the suspect has committed a crime. If a judge agrees that probable cause exists, a warrant will be issued.
- Failure to appear for your own case – if you were arrested and charged with a crime and later released from custody you agreed to certain release conditions when you were let out of jail. One of those conditions was that you would return for all future court appearances. Failing to do so usually results in a warrant for your arrest.
- Failure to appear when subpoenaed – if a court issues a subpoena ordering you to appear for court for any reason, ignoring the court order can result in an arrest warrant being issued for you. This occurs most commonly when an individual is subpoenaed as a witness in a criminal trial.
- Violation of probation – if you are on probation and violate any of the conditions of your probation your officer may file a violation with the court. That, in turn, may cause the judge to issue a warrant for your arrest.
If you have been made aware that you have an outstanding arrest warrant, consult with an experienced California criminal defense attorney immediately. Your attorney may be able to arrange for you to turn yourself and in get bonded out again. At the very least, most judges will look favorably on the fact that you voluntarily took care of the warrant instead of waiting to be caught by the police.