If you ever get arrested
If you ever get arrested under a DUI charge, what do you expect will happen? You will be booked and will be put behind bars for around 48 hours (it will neither be more than that nor be less). If it is your first DUI, you can expect to get a softer sentence than someone who has had a DUI or had been charged for something else before. If your DUI didn’t cause any injury to a person or damages to any property, you can expect that there will be no jail time. There’s only a 50 percent chance that your license could get suspended and you will be required to pay up fine, or even provide community service.
You will, however, have to be bailed out by someone or bail yourself out of the jail to wait for the date in the court for your DUI charge. The bail amount will depend on a number of factors including your existing criminal record, the blood alcohol level you had, and if you caused any injury or damage. If you have a clean criminal record and it was the first time you made an offense, it may not be required to post a bail. You may be immediately released by the judge to wait for your court date.
How is a Drunk Driving Suspect Booked?
Once there is an arrest, the suspect is put in police custody. He could be either ‘charged’, ‘booked’ or ‘processed’. The ‘booking’ process will involve the police officer compiling an arrest report and taking the following steps:
- The suspect is searched (it could be full body or a ‘pat down’ search based on the circumstances)
- Confiscating and making notes of the personal belongings of the suspects (money, purse, wallet, keys and other things found on the suspect’s person). The items are returned when the suspect is released from police custody.
- Making notes of the personal information of the criminal suspects, such as name, license number, address, gender, age, height, hair color, weight, and eye color.
- Making notes of the arrest and the suspected crime. This includes the date and location of arrest, the officer who read the rights to the suspect, details of the circumstances related to the arrest, the time of suspect’s arrival in the custody, the time of booking, and the crime charged on the suspect.
- Taking the suspect’s fingerprints (the fingerprints will usually be added to the national database).
- Taking the suspect’s photograph (widely known as the mug shot).
- Placing the suspect in a holding cell.
This booking procedure can last 60 minutes. Suspects are allowed in some states to make at least one free phone call (local) to their family, friends, attorney, or bail bond person.
Conditions to Bail Out a Drunk Driving Suspect
A drunk driving suspect may be released before/after being booked, on posting (paying) bail. Bail refers to cash or a bail bond that has to be paid for releasing the suspect until the case has been concluded.
Bail works as the incentive so that the suspect will appear during all the court appearances. If it happens that a bailed-out suspect is not present for a court appearance, the posted bail will stand lost or the bail bonds will be processed for cash collection. It will also lead to issuing of an arrest warrant on the suspect, along with a charge of ‘bail jumping’ and the initial offense.
What happens in absence of an immediate bail?
When there is no grant of immediate bail to a suspect after they are booked at a police station, the suspect is required to wait to appear in front of a judge for a bail hearing. But the suspect in such custody doesn’t have to be held for more than 2 days in such a case. Because holidays and weekends are not included in this time duration, the custody may sometimes be more than 2 days. Many times, someone arrested in the morning could have their bail hearing taking place in the afternoon.
What could the bail cost?
There are two ways the bail amount can be determined. It may be determined by a ‘bail schedule’ or the judge during the bail bearing. When there is no immediate permission to the drunk driving suspect to post bail at the police station, the bail amount set by the judge will be based on the following factors:
- Criminal record of the suspect which includes previous drunk driving / DUI offenses
- How serious the drunk driving / DUI offense was (if there was any injury or fatality and whether some aggravating factor was involved)
- Whether the suspect has any connections with the community, such as family relations. Whether they employed in a full-time job (if there is any chance that they may vanish after posting the bail)
The fixed ‘bail schedules’ along with the amounts for drunk driving offenses are different for different states.
What happens when someone cannot pay for bail?
If a suspect cannot afford to pay for their bail, they can use Power Bail Bonds. The job of Power Bail Bonds is to offer an in-writing guarantee to the court that if the suspect doesn’t attend the court on the appearing date, the bail bond seller (Power Bail Bonds) will be held liable for paying the bail amount. Contact us for a quote so we can assess your situation and provide more detailed information.