I was arrested a couple months back for a marijuana charge and I failed to show up to court now I have an outstanding warrant and I don’t kno what to do, before I turn myself in I want to know if I’m going to be waiting in jail for the next hearing or if I’ll just be able to bail myself out
Speak with an attorney who handles criminal cases in Suffolk County, he/she will show up with you to court to clear your warrant and it's very likely there will be no bail set at all, depending on your prior criminal and warrant history.
I am a former homicide prosecutor and have been an attorney for almost 20 years. I handle all criminal and traffic matters in Nassau and Suffolk County. Any comments here are not legal advice but are posted purely for educational purposes. There is no attorney-client relationship created by any of my comments.
Retain an attorney to represent you to vacate the warrant and dispose of the matter. The longer you wait, the worse it can be and you run the risk of being picked by the warrant squad. Do not make something relatively minor more serious. Call an experienced criminal defense lawyer immediately.
Missed Court means a bench warrant was issued. Showing up voluntarily to vacate the warrant makes it more likely, although not guaranteed, that you will be jailed when you go to Court. IF a judge sets bail on a marijuana charge, it will largely depend on any prior criminal history you have. Without much or any criminal history, there should be no issue of bail or maybe just low bail that can be posted and you would be out until your next court appearance. Contact a local attorney to go over the issue and retain someone to go with you to Court, which should help with the bail question. Good Luck!
I am a criminal defense attorney practicing in Nassau, Suffolk and New York City. The above information is not a substitution for a meeting whereas all potential legal issues can be discussed.
This happens unfortunately. Those facing criminal prosecution do miss scheduled Court appearances. People lead very busy lives while dealing with family, friends, job related matters, and handling multiple responsibilities. To be clear, Judges and the Court system do NOT like when people miss Court. However, they dislike it even more if law enforcement has to come find you to compel you to return.
In the event that you return voluntarily, without the warrant squad having to pull you out of your home, place of business, or finding you on the street, Judges will be much more understanding and willing to give you the benefit of the doubt. That is, Judges are much more inclined to give you a second chance when you appear back in Court as soon as possible after missing your scheduled date. You must explain the circumstances surrounding why you missed your Court appearance. As a former prosecutor and as a current defense attorney, I have seen numerous instances where Judges just reset the date, particularly for a low level offense like this. Be prepared for a good and well deserved scolding, but you should be ok.
This advice assumes that you don’t have a prior warrant history or anything else in your background showing a disrespect for Court orders. If so, have a family member or friend accompany you to Court, and make sure they have bail money with them. In that event, a Judge is unlikely to revoke your bail entirely and just keep you in, but they will certainly consider increasing it — whether the prosecutor asks or not.
The following is information only, based on federal law and general legal principles. Â Your state may have its own laws that provide similar or greater protection.
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