What Can You Do If You're Afraid That Your Bail Is Going to be Raised in a Sex Crime Case in Los Angeles? Unfortunately, when people are charged with sex crime cases in Los Angeles, bail get raised all the time, especially in severe sex crime cases involving multiple charges.
Usually, the prosecutors cannot stack bail. In other words, they can't charge multiple charges and get bail on top of bail for each one of the charges. The judge will usually pick the most severe charge, and that bail will be what controls.
However, in sex crime cases, the legislature has allowed judges to stack bail, so you will often see multiple charges related to various incidents. The prosecutors will be able to stack bail in that circumstance.
So, many times, somebody will post one bail, show up to their arraignment, end up with a much higher bail, and be taken into custody where they either can't bail out or take some time to bail out.
Bail is the funds deposited by a defendant primarily designed to ensure they will attend all future court appearances. It can be posted with cash or in the form of a bond secured by a bail bondsman.
The bail amount could be a set amount that a judge has the discretion to raise or lower. Their decision is usually based on the defendant's prior criminal record and the circumstances of the sex case. Our Los Angeles criminal defense lawyers will review this topic further below.
How Does a Judge Set Bail in California?
Every County in California has a local bail schedule for certain crimes. After your arrest, your family can view the bail schedule themselves or ask a bail bondsman to determine the bail amount.
If arrested for a misdemeanor sex offense, such as a sexual battery, you will generally get released with no bail after getting booked at the jail.
If your crime is listed on the bail schedule, you will usually be required to pay that amount or post a bond. The arresting officer can request your bail be set at a higher amount than the bail schedule indicates.
The judge typically continues the bail or modifies it at the arraignment, which is the first court appearance after arrest. Your criminal defense lawyer can request a hearing on your bail within two days after your arraignment to challenge it.
After the bail hearing, the judge has the option to leave the bail amount as is, increase it, decrease it, or release you on your own recognizance (OR). The more severe sex crimes will result in the judge setting a higher bail amount. When deciding the bail amount, they will review the following:
- sex crime you are charged with,
- flight risk,
- risk to society,
- bail schedule,
- prior criminal history, and
- any failures to appear in court.
However, the two main factors are whether you are a flight risk and a danger to the community. To decide the flight risk question, a judge will review whether you have family, children, or property in California you probably don't want to leave behind.
They will also examine the possibility of committing additional crimes if they were to allow a release on bail. Depending on the case, it's common for defendants to have concerns about getting their bail amount raised.
Why Should I Retain a Criminal Lawyer?
To combat this, I think you need a couple of things. One, you have to bring a powerful criminal defense attorney in that can fight the bail for you, and that can get rid of what they call a 1275 hold if necessary.
Sometimes they're going to make sure that whatever money you're using for the bail is clean money. Sometimes that takes time and effort, so you're going to want to have a great criminal lawyer by your side to:
- guard against your bail being raised, and
- if it is raised, to figure out how to get you out.
The second thing you may need to bring with you, depending on what your attorney tells you, is a bail bondsman. In other words, if you can bring a bail bondsman, even if your bail gets raised, I'm often able to ask the judge if he can simply remain in the courtroom while the bail bondsman posts the extra bail.
Once that is shown that it has been posted, you can typically leave from the courtroom instead of going into custody, being transferred to downtown Los Angeles and then getting bailed out later that night after they process you.
Defending Sex Crime Cases in California
So, the bottom line is this. If you're charged with a sex crime, you've got to cover every angle, and bail is one of the angles; you need an attorney like me, who's been doing this for 30 years.
I've had a lot of success and know how to fight prosecutors who are being unreasonable in trying to raise your bail so you can't get out.
You're held in custody, and you have to fight your case from the inside, which is never anything that anybody wants to do because (1) it's difficult to fight a case from the inside, and (2) nobody wants to be in custody in a sex crime case in LA county.
So, if you've been arrested for a sex crime case, you're due to appear for an arraignment; you need a criminal defense attorney who does a lot of sex crime cases.
I worked for the District Attorney's office when I started. I worked for a Superior Court judge, and for the last 28 years, I've defended sex crimes for cases just like yours. I've walked the road you're about to walk, and I've had success.
Pick up the phone now. Ask for a meeting with Ron Hedding. We will start to prepare right from the beginning and be ready for all angles when your arraignment comes to pass in Los Angeles Superior Court. The Hedding Law Firm is located in LA County, and we offer a free case review to discuss your case and legal options.