I was recently issued a warrant but have already contacted the courts and scheduled a court date. Are there any precautions I should take? This is my first charge and first ticket. (CA)
The sooner you go to court, the better!
Generally judges/courts are more lenient when you're the one who put the case back on calendar.
Expect the judge to ask you why you didn't appear. If you have a good reason tell it. If you don't have a good reason DONT LIE. There is no faster way to annoy a judge then to lie to them. Judges are human [even if they do a good job of hiding it sometimes]. If you didn't go to court because you were scared, say so. If you put the case back on calendar because you realized that avoidance is not the way to deal with your problems, say so. This is one of those instances where honesty really is the best policy.
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I would carry your minute order around with you before your court date. If an officer sees you on the street technically he can arrest you. It is less likely if you provide him with the paperwork showing you are taking care of the process. Most judges in Fresno County would not put you in jail for one FTA on a misdemeanor. However, it is possible. Be courteous, most like it when you dress nice too.
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