What to Do if You Have an Arrest Warrant

Imagine that the worst has happened, and you just found out that you have a warrant out for your arrest. Do you go to a police station and turn yourself in? Should you contact an attorney first? Maybe dyeing your hair and running off to Mexico sounds like a good idea—but stop, take a deep breath and contact an attorney about your arrest warrant in Carlsbad, CA.

What is an arrest warrant?

An arrest warrant means that the police have shown probable cause that a crime has been committed, and that you are the perpetrator. “Probable cause” is a much lower standard than “beyond a reasonable doubt,” which is the standard for convicting a person of a crime, but the police still have to adhere to it.

The general definition of probable cause is “sufficient reason based upon known facts to believe a crime has been committed or that certain property is connected with a crime. Probable cause must exist for a law enforcement officer to make an arrest without a warrant, search without a warrant or seize property in the belief the items were evidence of a crime.”

That means that if you have been arrested for a crime, you shouldn’t panic—there is a big difference between “sufficient reason” and “beyond a reasonable doubt”—but you should definitely contact an experienced criminal defense attorney before taking any other action.

Typically, judges grant arrest warrants when a police officer or officers show that there is a good chance that a) a crime has been committed, and b) you are the person that committed the crime. Most officers do not go to the bother of seeking a warrant unless there is a bigger case involved, so you can relax if you’ve got a few outstanding parking tickets.

(On the other hand, remember that the feds got Al Capone on tax evasion—so it’s best to stay above board in all your dealings.)

What to do if you have a valid arrest warrant

Is there a valid arrest warrant for you? If so, you should call an experience criminal defense attorney immediately, as the circumstances may not be as dire as they seem. Remember that warrants are granted only on the likelihood that you were connected with a crime, not that you actually committed it.

Once you’ve contacted an attorney, they will guide you through the process of either fighting the case or surrendering peacefully to the police (which may need to happen either way). They’ll also counsel you about what to say—or what to hold back, depending on your specific circumstances—to the police. Remember, Law & Order got at least one thing right: you have the right to remain silent, the right to an attorney and anything you say can and will be used against you (otherwise known as your Miranda rights).

When you need a skilled criminal defense attorney, make sure to call Gregory S. Hood, Attorney at Law, P.C. We can help you with arrest warrants in Carlsbad, CA and more.

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