Like most other states, Nebraska has steadily strengthened its laws involving controlled substances, as well as the penalties for breaking those laws, over the last several decades. As the offense gets more serious, the ease with which an arrestee gets released from jail decreases. Understandably though, one of the first concerns you will likely have if you are arrested for any criminal offense is getting released from jail. Therefore, if you find yourself behind bars charged with a drug-related charge you may start wondering “Can a drug crime attorney help me get out of jail?” While no attorney can guarantee your release from jail, retaining the services of a drug crime attorney almost always increases your odds of being released from custody.
The Arrest Process
An arrest for a drug-related offense can occur in one of two ways. The first involves the arresting officer actually seeing something that amounts to probable cause for an arrest, whereas the second involves an arrest warrant being issued by a judge after an investigation turns up the necessary probable cause. An example of the first type of arrest might include being pulled over for a minor traffic violation whereupon the officer notices the smell of marijuana or even sees drugs or drug paraphernalia in the vehicle. In that case, the officer may determine probable cause exists to make an arrest. The second type of arrest typically involves more serious charges which have arisen out of a lengthy criminal investigation.
How and When Is Bond Set?
Although no two bond systems work precisely the same, in general there are two primary ways in which a defendant’s bond can be set. The first involves a judge reviewing the facts as presented to him/her when an arrest warrant is issued. This route usually involves an undercover operation or at least a fairly extensive criminal investigation aimed at identifying the major “players” in drug activity. A law enforcement officer will eventually request a warrant based on the information gleaned from the investigation. If the judge signs the warrant, a bond amount may be set as well. If, however, a defendant is arrested on the spot, bond is not set until after the defendant arrives at the jail. In that case, a Bond Commissioner or a judge will set the defendant’s bond amount based on the defendant’s criminal history (or lack thereof) and the severity of the instant offense.
Once you have been arrested, processed, and a bond set, you can be released relatively quickly if you are able to “make bond,” which is just a way of saying that you (or, more accurately, someone on the outside) are able to pay the bond. Again, while not all bond systems are the same, most allow a defendant to pay the entire bond in cash or go through a bail bondsman. If you are able to pay the entire amount in cash you will be released and remain free for the duration of your case, providing you comply with all pretrial release conditions. The balance remaining, after all courts costs and fines are paid, will be refunded to you at the end of your case. If you cannot pay the entire amount in cash you will have to hire a bail bondsman to whom you will pay a percentage of the bond amount that will not be returned to you. The bail bondsman then effectuates the payment of the bond.
What If the Bond Amount Is Too High?
If the bond amount set is too high for you to be able to pay, as is often the case when the offense involved is a drug- related crime, your best option is to retain the services of an attorney to try and get the bond lowered. An experienced drug crime attorney can request a hearing to review your bond in an attempt to get it lowered. If the hearing is granted, your attorney will know what evidence or testimony the court likely needs to hear in order to consider a bond reduction.
If you have been arrested for a drug-related offense and are unable to pay the high bond amount initially set for you, it is in your best interest to consult with an experienced Nebraska drug crime attorney. If you have been charged with a drug-related offense in Nebraska contact Petersen Criminal Defense Law 24 hours a day at 402-509-8070 to discuss your case with an experienced drug crime attorney.