Everyone who is saying the judge made an example out of him...uh, no he didn't. In case anyone isn't aware, which apparently no one is, when someone's name is called for roll call in court and they are not there, a bench warrant is issued for their arrest. Not sometimes, not most of the time, EVERY time. The courts do not care if you have an excuse, had to work, had a doctor's apt, had school, etc. Too bad. You're on their schedule. Unless your lawyer gets your court date re-scheduled, you MUST be there on the date they tell you. The only way to get out of going is having your lawyer call the court and say that he/she cannot make it because of a prior engagement, and even then they must send/show the court proof of this prior engagement. Also, any court appointed lawyer is not going to do that for anyone, they don't give a shit. Whether or not a person who doesn't show is jailed depends on if they get arrested or not. A bench warrant isn't a criminal warrant, so they aren't going to pursue an individual like they would if the person had a criminal warrant for murder, rape, trafficking drugs, etc. They are pretty much on the run until they get arrested, which usually happens in a routine traffic stop. Less commonly, a relative or citizen will call the police if they know where a person with a warrant is hiding (although eventually, a person is likely to get caught in some way. If they are a career criminal, most will commit another crime and get arrested, and then must deal with all of their bench warrants once they are taken to jail and go to court). Even if it is a bench warrant, if the police have good information, they will go to the location and attempt to arrest the individual on the bench warrant. That person then goes to jail and must wait until the next business day for court to have a new bond set. If a personal recognizance bond was issued before, the new bond will likely be a cash/surety, or high 10%. If the original bond was already cash/surety, or 10%, the new bond will almost always be cash/surety only, and the amount needed to post bail will rise significantly. In both of these situations, the person that was picked up on the bench warrant because of not coming to court will be deemed a "flight risk", regardless of their reason for not showing up. Whether or not this person can afford their new bond determines if they make bail and are released. If they cannot afford it, they remain jailed until their criminal proceedings are over and they are sentenced.
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