I have an FTA for a DWI in 7/09.My court date was 12/09.Imoved to FL in 8/09.I requested a postponement-it was denied.Bail -25k

Asked about 3 years ago - Westminster, MD

is it be possible to get out w/o bail.I was placed on a new meds two days before the DWI & have since been diagnosed w BoPolar disorder.I have been an inpatient hospital at least 2 times since & completed an intensive out patient program.I see a theraprist weekly & a psych monthly.I went to the CC Health Depart.-had substance abuse eval. & meet with substance abuse counselor individually once a week. Im single mother of a great student and have nobody to watch her.I don't have $$ for bail & was told that even if I did bailsbonds might not bail me out cause FTA.I have docs of me being prescribed new med 2 days prior DWI & letters from my therapist,psych,substance counselor.The public defen. said i had to turn mself in first.Any advice?Should I bring mental health docs?thx for ur time

Attorney answers (2)

  1. Judith Adrienne Gillett

    Contributor Level 8

    Answered . Your chances of receiving some type of pre-trial release are greatly enhanced if you hire an attorney to file a motion on your behalf seeking to quash the bench warrant and proposing alternative pre-trial release conditions other than incarceration. Be very careful about what you say and/or present to the court by way of argument for pre-trial release. The law(s) and regulation(s) surrounding the release of substance abuse treatment and general psychiatric care records are very strict, and are there to protect you. You may inadvertently waive any claim that those records are privileged if you produce them to the court in advance of your trial in your attempt to secure bail. It could be possible that your medications affected your performance on the field sobriety tests, leading to your arrest. A competent dwi attorney should be able to evaluate that possibility and explore this option with you. What you don't want to do is make it easy for the State to prove its case against you by tipping them off as to what your defenses may be, thus allowing them a chance to refute it or otherwise prepare for it.

    If this is your only fta, in my experience, you should be able to find a bail bondsman to help you out. You should consult with a local criminal defense attorney immediately. He/she may be able to refer you to a good bondsman. Good luck!

    This advice does not/is not intended to establish an attorney-client relationship. This advice is general in... more
  2. Mark William Oakley

    Contributor Level 18

    Answered . You need to clear this FTA bench warrant up. The problem is, if you get stopped for any driving violation in Florida (or in any other state) and they run a record check, this bench warrant will come up and you will be immediately arrested and put in jail, and held for up to 30 or more days pending extradition to Maryland. Therefore, this bench warrant is hanging over your head, and has been, since 2009. You've been fortunate so far to have avoided any problems, but even a minor moving violation could trigger a routine computer record check and reveal the warrant for your arrest. You should hire a lawyer in Maryland first, who will arrange a time to come up and have you turned in on the warrant. It may be possible to arrange an appearance before a judge the same day (even the same judge who issued the warrant), who could then reduce the bond so you can afford either to post it or pay a bail bondsman. It is very likely you will get a bond modification based upon voluntarily coming to Maryland to turn yourself in, as that demonstrates you are trying to address this issue and are not "fleeing" the jurisdiction. There is a reasonable chance that the bond will be converted to a personal or "penalty" bond, meaning you would not have to post any money at all. You should be prepared to have some money available to cover a bail bondsman's 10% fee for posting a bond, just in case your bond is only reduced.

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