Arrest / Bench Warrants
In Florida, missing a court date for any charge and any reason without making prior arrangements with the court is a big deal. After you fail to appear for your Duval County misdemeanor or felony charge, the judge issues a bench warrant for your arrest. This is an order to arrest you as soon as you are identified by a law enforcement officer, and though it is possible to not be arrested on such a warrant for years, you still must live every day with the risk of being arrested. It is always best to surrender yourself to the court voluntarily in lieu of being arrested, and an experienced Florida criminal defense lawyer in Jacksonville can help you explore your warrant resolution options and fight for a favorable one.
DUVAL COUNTY BENCH WARRANT ATTORNEY
It is never a good idea to wait out a bench warrant until you are identified and arrested on it. Contact experienced Jacksonville criminal defense lawyer Bill Roelke of Roelke Law, P.A. to find a favorable, voluntary resolution for your bench warrant in Duval County, St. Johns County, Nassau County, or Clay County.
With experience as a judicial clerk and over two decades of experience as a criminal defense attorney, Bill Roelke knows what it takes to think like and appeal to a judge concerning your outstanding warrant. Your first consultation with Roelke Law, P.A. concerning your bench warrant or alias capias warrant in Duval County or the surrounding areas is free, so call (904) 354-0333 today to schedule yours.
Types of Arrest Warrants for Failure to Appear in Florida
The reasons you may be required to appear in court in Florida are practically endless, from traffic violations, to DUI, to a more serious offense like assault or drug trafficking. No matter the reason, failure to appear at this court date or make prior arrangements to move the date will result in one thing: a warrant for your arrest. A warrant for failure to appear for a minor violation or misdemeanor is generally known as a bench warrant. Bench warrant arrests normally occur during a stop for something else, such as a routine traffic stop, and you are usually eligible to post bond and be released until your court date.
A failure to appear warrant for a felony charge is more serious, and is known as an alias capias. Since an alias capias is generally for more severe offenses that are more likely to be violent in nature, it is more probable that law enforcement will actively pursue an arrest for an alias capias warrant. Once booked on an alias capias warrant, it is unlikely you will be able to post bond – which means you will remain in jail until your new court date. Working with a qualified defense lawyer in Duval County to arrange a voluntary surrender instead of living in fear of arrest is a proactive approach to bench warrant or alias capias warrant resolution that will most likely put you in a more favorable light with the court.
The main consequence for failing to voluntary resolve your Duval County or other Florida bench warrant or alias capias warrant is the risk of being arrested anytime, anywhere, in any number of situations. Since the warrant occurs almost immediately after your failure to appear in court, your risk for arrest is also immediate, with or without a valid reason for your absence in court. While bench warrant arrests usually occur in situations where your driver's license or other credentials are checked, alias capias warrant arrests can happen any time you are identified on sight by a law enforcement officer. Or, in cases of warrants for more severe charges, when law enforcement has identified your location – which could be at school, at work, or in any number of public situations.
In addition to the constant, everyday risk of being arrested, bench warrants and alias capias warrants show up on background checks and driver's license checks. This can make you look like an irresponsible citizen, or even a criminal on the run, to potential creditors, employers, and landlords, and negatively impact your ability to apply for Social Security and other government benefits.
Additionally, a bench warrant or alias capias warrant does not go away unless resolved voluntarily or through arrest, and the records will follow you wherever you go until such resolution occurs. Waiting until you are arrested to address the warrant usually means jail time, fines, bonds, and being in the court's bad graces. You have a better chance at a more favorable outcome through voluntary resolution, and an experienced criminal lawyer in Jacksonville can help you explore your options.
An arrest on an outstanding bench warrant or alias capias warrant is not the only way to bring it to resolution, and it certainly won't do you any favors as far as the court's opinion of you is concerned. It is best to proactively work for a resolution of your warrant. Though you can do so alone, the benefit of working with an experienced Duval County defense lawyer is the ability to explore your options and develop a warrant resolution and/or surrender strategy that can potentially achieve the most favorable outcome for you. Some proactive warrant resolutions that may be available to you include:
- Petitioning the court to withdraw a bench warrant or alias capius that was improperly issued
- Motioning to withdraw a bench warrant or alias capias for a failure to appear that was unintentional or unavoidable
- Scheduling an emergency bond hearing to attempt to lower the bond amount due to exigent circumstances or to petition for ROR (release on own recognizance) bond
- Appearing with representation in court to surrender and petition the judge for quick resolution
- Negotiate with the police for your surrender, or notify your attorney of your intent to surrender to the police so that he or she is ready for your first appearance before a judge in the next 24-48 hours
- Self-arrest program, where available
Roelke Law, P.A. | Alias Capias Warrant Defense Lawyer in Jacksonville
If you have an outstanding bench warrant or alias capias in Jacksonville, Jacksonville Beach, Atlantic Beach, Neptune Beach, St. Augustine, or Ponte Vedra Beach, don’t wait until resolution is forced by your arrest. Take a proactive approach and contact experienced defense lawyer Bill Roelke of Roelke Law, P.A. to begin strategizing your voluntary resolution. Call (904) 354-0333 today to schedule your free consultation and find out what favorable warrant outcome Roelke Law, P.A. may be able to negotiate for your warrant.