With the over crowed jail population of many states being the target of certain human rights groups such as the ACLU, Arnold Foundation, and NAACP. These groups have set their sites on the bail bonding industry by saying that they “prey on those who can’t afford bail.” Some states have or will be going to a form of Bail Reform such as New Jersey, Alaska, parts of New Mexico, Texas, in a few months New York, in 2020 California is going to vote on it. Of the mentioned states, Alaska and Texas have since reversed their failed bail reform policy with other states considering doing the same.
As a current bail agent for twenty two years I have seen a lot over the years. I know many of you reading this will think I am biased on my stance on bail reform and to a point you are correct because I know our value to the public, but hear me out.
Can we both agree that a person is usually arrested when there is enough suspicion or evidence that a person has done something against our current laws? When this person is arrested they go before a judge/magistrate to determine the severity of the crime, risk to the community, and the risk of returning to court for trial. A judge is going to set a bond dollar amount that can be secured or unsecured at the discretion of the judge. At this point some of you are saying that there shouldn’t be a dollar amount attached to someones release but everyone has to be treated equally and how can you do that if some get out for free and some have to pay a bond? Some of you would say to let them all out for free because they haven’t been convicted of anything yet. Well our system will NEVER be completely fair for all but letting everyone out without some form of accountability is unacceptable. When a person is facing having to pay a bond they can pay the whole bond themselves and get it all back when they complete court or they can hire a bail bondsman and pay a percentage of the bond. When you hire a bondsman he or she is now being held accountable for that defendant to appear in court for all court dates until there is a final judgment on that person’s case. Do you know that some cases are continued for up to three years! During this period of time many things can happen and often these people relocate. Who is going to go find them in order for them to have their day in court? The police that originally arrested the person are restricted to their respective county or state and can’t cross those lines with the power to arrest BUT bail bondmen can. Do you know who pays the bill for state and local law enforcement, the taxpayers do! Do you know who pays for bail bondsmen to travel to all these different places to find and bring back these defendants to stand trial? It was paid by the people that posted bail originally and not the tax payers. Do you want to pay the bill for people to get out of jail that you don’t even know? When people subscribe to the Bail Reform idea that is exactly what you are doing. It has been proven in other states like Alaska and Texas that tried bail reform and returned to using secured bail bonds.
In the end someone has to pay the bill to to get things done. Im not saying that there can’t be some changes to the way things are done but I am saying the value of a bail bondsman far out weighs going to a system that allows everyone out of jail without any accountability. This debate is similar to the issue of healthcare in our country, should the government pay for it or should each individual cover the cost? We all know when the government picks up the bill its not really free! When considering whether or not to go to bail reform consider the victims of these cases, the community that they will be released into. You can’t always think with your heart when it comes to being fair to everyone involved in a situation with the law.
This is the time of year when children need toys the most! On December 21st Off The Hook Bail Bonding will be hosting our first Toy Drive through the group “Those Behind The Badge.” Donations can be wrapped or unwrapped toys and cash is also acceptable with all proceeds going to the local foster children of the Bair Foundation of Wilmington, NC.
Come out and show your support on December 21, starting at 9:00am and going until atleast 5:00. There will be New Hanover and Wilmington Police officers here to greet you and thank you for your donation!
After being on Princess Street for the past four and a half years we have decided to move two blocks away down to 106 Water St. Unit#103 Wilmington, North Carolina directly in front of the USS North Carolina Battleship. We will still offer the fastest bail bonding services to the New Hanover County Courthouse and the jail located at 3950 Juvenile Center Rd Castle Hayne, NC. Since we have moved to this new location we will be able to provide a NEW bail bonding service that we will disclose at a later dat. Thank you Wilmington for allowing us to be the premiere bail bonding company for the second year in a row!
A lot of the concern these days is turned toward carrying guns and the right to bear arms. The fact is that in North Carolina you are more likely to run into a person carrying a knife rather than a gun. So what kind of knives are legal and how should they be carried on a person? According to North Carolina State Law a Conceal Weapon is defined in the following statute
§ 14-269. Carrying concealed weapons
(a) It shall be unlawful for any person willfully and intentionally to carry concealed about his person any bowie knife, dirk, dagger, slung shot, loaded cane, metallic knuckles, razor, shurikin, stun gun, or other deadly weapon of like kind, except when the person is on the person’s own premises.
North Carolina statute defines a pocket knife as a small knife, made to carry in a pocket or purse, which has its cutting edge and point entirely enclosed by the handle, and that may not be opened by a throwing, explosive, or spring action.
When we get a call for a bail bond that involves a charge of a concealed weapon, most of the time is has to do with a knife of some sort. You should check with your local sheriffs department to find out what their interpretation is of the law on carrying spring assisted bladed knives since the statute does not clearly define the use of these knives.
These days everyone is on some type of social media such as Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat. With the ability to post your thoughts along with photos of just about anything, is this okay? Well in North Carolina the fist person to find out that it is NOT okay to post nude photos of a person online without their consent was a twenty year old girl from Apex, NC on April 1, 2016. This young lady was arrested and charged with the new law called “Disclosure of Private Parts” and she had to post a bail amount of $3000 with a bail bondsman.The General Assembly passed legislation back in the summer of 2016 making such postings a Class H felony and allowing victims to sue perpetrators for damages. The complete wording of the new law that went into effect on December 1, 2016, makes it a Class H felony for anyone to post explicit photos or videos of a person without their consent, with the intent to harass, extort, or intimidate the victim. The law also addresses punishment for minors, making this crime a Class 1 misdemeanor for anyone under the age of 18.
While many people are thankful for legislators taking action to protect victims of revenge porn, some legal professionals have suggested that criminalizing revenge porn restrains the First Amendment right to free speech because laws that address revenge porn are “too broad,” i.e. the laws surround too many events not related to revenge porn.
While revenge porn laws typically will not affect First Amendment rights because these laws will deal mostly with civil action, there are still many questions as to if this law is too broad. Are these postings more than just a joke or momentary lapse in good judgment. A photo or video on the internet can last a lifetime for the victim and can have devastating consequences when applying for a job, maintaining a relationship, or simply being out in a public place. Maybe North Carolina’s new “revenge porn” law will persuade people to “think before they post” to avoid criminal and civil consequences. In the moment of posting this malicious content it may seem like revenge but when someone gets arrested and they need to be bonded out, its not worth it!
Misdemeanor Driving While Intoxicated has five levels. Level I is the most serious and Level V the least. Level V
Punishable by a fine up to $200 and a minimum jail sentence of 24 hours and a maximum of 60 days. A judge can suspend the sentence but upon completion that the driver spend 24 hours in jail, perform 24 hours of community service or not operate a vehicle for 30 days. Level IV
Punishable by a fine up to $500 and a minimum jail sentence of 48 hours and a maximum of 120 days. A judge may suspend the sentence but after the driver has completed 48 hours in jail, and performed 48 hours of community service or not operate a vehicle for 60 days. Level III
Punishable by a fine up to $1,000 and a minimum jail sentence of 72 hours and a maximum of six months. A judge can suspend the sentence only after a driver has spent at least 72 hours in jail, completed 72 hours of community service or hasn’t operated a vehicle for atleast 90 days. Level II
Punishable by a fine up to $2,000 and a minimum jail sentence of seven days and a maximum of one year. A judge CANNOT suspend the minimum sentence. Level I
Punishable by a fine up to $4,000 and a minimum jail sentence of 30 days and a maximum of two years. A judge CANNOT suspend the minimum sentence.
Level I and II drivers are usually repeat offenders, persons whose license has been revoked, impaired drivers, impaired drivers who were driving with young children in the car and impaired drivers who hurt someone in a wreck. Impaired drivers must complete a substance abuse assessment and comply with any recommended treatment as a condition for having their drivers license restored at the end of the revocation period.
As for Habitual DWI offenders, these are drivers that have had three prior DWI convictions within the past seven years, a DWI becomes a more severe felony. But more importantly, the Habitual DWI statute now states that a minimum active jail term of one year this is a sentence that CANNOT be suspended. Offenders must also go through a substance abuse program while in jail or as a condition of parole.
What is a Transfer Bond? When a friend or family member travels to another state and ends up in jail for whatever reason this can be a big problem. Most bail bonding companies do not like to post bail bonds for people that are not local. When a person is arrested in another state they are looked at as a flight risk in fear that they will not return for court. This is when you will need to contact your local bail bondsman and request a transfer bond.
How does a Transfer Bond work? Once you contact your local bail bondsman he or she will contact their surety company to find a bail agent close to the county in the state where your loved one is in jail at. Since there are more people involed there may be additional costs but this is usually a flat fee for posting the bond by the out of state bail agent.
How do I start the process? If you need this service call our office or use our “Quick Bail Request” and someone will be glad to walk you through the process which can be done online even from a Smartphone!
When you are pulled over by a police officer in Wilmington as you sit there watching in your rearview mirror as the officer walks up to your car a lot of thing are running through your head. At this point the officer has a reason to pull you over which could be a number of things such as a expired tag, speeding, weaving, etc. Once the officer comes to your car window and you roll the window down he will be observing you for things such as your slurred speech, clarity of your eyes, and smell of alcohol. Once the officer has reason to suspect that you may be intoxicated he may ask you to step out of your car to conduct a field sobriety test. If you do not pass this test, you will probably be asked to give a breath, blood, or urine test.
In North Carolina, you can be charged with DWI for driving any vehicle when your blood alcohol concentration, or BAC, is at or above legal limit OR while you are under the influence of an impairing substance. DWI is usually defined by your BAC:
21 or Older: 0.08%
Commercial drivers: 0.04%
Younger than 21: Any alcohol concentration
Prior DWI: 0.04%
If your test results show that your BAC is above the legal limit, or if you refuse to allow them to test, the officer may arrest you right there.
At this point you should be read your right and then you will be handcuffed and put into the back of a patrol car and taken to police station or sheriffs detention center. Once you arrive at the detention center you will be given the chance to blow into a alko-sensor that will determine your BAC. If you refuse to submit a breath analysis your license could be revoked for one year. Once a blood alcohol level has been determined you will be taken before a magistrate or a judge to determine if you will be given a secured or unsecured bond. If it it determined that you qualify for a unsecured bond you will be released without having to pay any money. If it determined that you are to be placed on a secured bond you will need to pay the full amount of the bond or hire a bail bondsman. Once a bond has been given we hope you will call us at Off The Hook Bail Bonds to help you or send us a bail request from our website.
We frequently get calls from people that ask, ” what do I do if I think I have a warrant for my arrest?” Well recently most of our surrounding county jails have gone to the policy of not giving out warrant information over the telephone since a lot of the people that find out that they have warrants don’t want to turn themselves in. It is in your best interest to act quickly and get this warrant served on your terms and not get a surprise knock at your door from a police officer.
What we suggest is for you to contact a friend to come with you then call Off The Hook Bail bonds .
Once you call, we will have a friendly bail agent meet with you and have the warrant served and immediately bond you out without you having to worry about putting on those “lovely” county jail outfits.
During the holidays it can be lonely to be without a loved one that may have gotten arrested due to poor judgment. We here at Off the Hook Bail Bonds understand that you want to be with your friends and family over the holidays so we are offering 10% off the bond fee for any bail bond until January 3rd 2016! In order to take advantage of this offer mention this ad to any of our New Hanover, Brunswick, Pender, or Onslow County bail bondsmen when you call!