Do you have a warrant for your arrest? This article discusses what to do if you have a warrant out for your arrest.
How can you find out if you have a warrant for your arrest?
Do you have a warrant for your arrest? You might have had one of the following already happen:
- You received a letter in the mail, from the court or the Orange County Sheriff’s Department, indicating that you have a warrant;
- You received a visit from an Orange County Sheriff, who spoke to someone looking for you, or left a business card looking for you; or
- You were notified by a potential employer, or by a state or federal licensing agency, that there is an outstanding warrant.
Finding out if you have an arrest warrant is easier than you might think. An arrest warrant is filed against any individual by a judge, presumably an Orange County judge. Warrants can be filed by the traffic department for a traffic related offense or by the criminal courts for a felony or misdemeanor offense. Most individuals can contact or search the database of the sheriff’s department in the county their supposed offense took place, which would be the Orange County Sheriff’s Department in this case.
The link to search for your name is here: Search by name for active warrants in Orange County, CA.
(In case you’re wondering, searching your name does not trigger anything on the sheriff’s end. The website doesn’t require you to register or give identification information on the person doing the search). In Orange County, if a warrant is issued against you, law enforcement can arrest you at any time, or for any reason. This is why it needs to be a high priority to clear up the arrest as soon as possible.
Even if you are doing something simple, like jaywalking, you can be asked who you are, and arrested and held for the warrant. Or, you can be arrested at home, at work, or anywhere. It is not a bad idea to do frequent checks of any outstanding warrants through the Orange County Sheriff’s Department. Police cannot make a lawful arrest unless they have probable cause or a legitimate arrest warrant. But once that warrant is issued, they can arrest with no questions asked, for any reason, anywhere any time.
What do you do if you do find there is a warrant for your arrest?
Do you have a warrant for your arrest? If you find out that there is a warrant out for your arrest then you should immediately contact an attorney to arrange to surrender or clear up the warrant. Orange County criminal defense lawyers, like our criminal defense attorneys at Robert Miller & Associates, are experienced in criminal procedures and warrant recalls. We understand the criminal process from the initial warrant/arrest and can guide you through the system for the most successful resolution to your case. With us on your side, you do not have to be afraid. We will take care of your warrant within 24 hours (assuming the court is open). In most cases, you can post bail rather than remaining in custody until your arraignment hearing.
Why was a warrant issued for your arrest?
Most people have arrest warrants issued against them because they failed to appear in court (or to the Traffic Department). Some failed to pay fines or fees, or do something that is part of a sentence. Court appearances are not optional, but rather are court orders that you must respond to. Unfortunately, there are many who are not even aware that they had to appear in court. This could happen for a few reasons, such as a change of address and the order was never received. We can help you sort out the details. We understand that you have enough on your plate as it is.
Instructions for Appearing on a Criminal (Felony or Misdemeanor) Warrant
According to the Orange County Sheriff’s Department:
To appear on a warrant, you must report to the Criminal Operations Department by 8:00 a.m. at the Justice Center which ordered the warrant to be heard at 8:30 a.m.. To post bail, contact the Justice Center which ordered the warrant.
You may also surrender at any law enforcement agency or station, or the jail, to be booked and released. This requires that you post bail, with a future court date for you or your attorney. (This is not preferred, as it requires that you pay what might be substantial bail, and delays the process).
Instructions for Appearing on a Traffic Warrant
According to the Orange County Traffic Department: