What Happens If I have a Warrant for My Arrest?
When a warrant for arrest is issued, it is in your best interest to take steps to resolve the issue immediately. Whether the warrant was issued because police believe they have probable cause to arrest you or you simply failed to appear in court, warrants remain in effect until they are "quashed."
Here are the facts to know about the steps an Arizona criminal defense lawyer can help you take to have an arrest warrant canceled.
Arizona Arrest Warrants
Arizona arrest warrants are broadly divided into warrants that are issued by an Arizona court and warrants issued by police who obtain a warrant for arrest from the state of Arizona.
Court-issued arrest warrants are commonly referred to as "bench warrants", whereas warrants sought and obtained by law enforcement are simply known as "arrest warrants."
Bench warrants are issued in accordance with §13-2506 and §13-2507 of the A.R.S. The 13-2506 statute relates to arrest warrants when someone fails to appear in court for a misdemeanor or petty offense.
Such behavior is classified as failure to appear in the second degree, which is itself a Class 1 misdemeanor.
13-2507 outlines that a person's knowing failure to appear in court for a legal proceeding connected to a felony offense is a "failure to appear in the first degree".
Arizona law classifies such an offense as a Class 5 felony, which may lead to a maximum 2.5-year prison sentence for a first offense.
Police-obtained arrest warrants are governed by A.R.S. §13-3887, requiring that police must have reasonable belief that is based upon probable cause that a suspect has committed a crime.
If this benchmark is met, then Arizona law enforcement may obtain a warrant for the suspect's arrest and subsequently arrest the suspect.
What Should You Do to Quash the Warrant?
When an arrest warrant is issued, a judge frequently a bond amount that must be paid for the warrant to be quashed, which simply means the warrant will be canceled.
Bond amounts are often implemented for bench warrants based on a failure to appear, for example.
While this is one potential way to quash a warrant, it is highly advisable to reach out to an Arizona criminal defense lawyer before you make any hasty decisions.
Arizona also lets you appear in court as a "walk-in" on an unscheduled date to resolve a warrant based on a failure to appear.
This can be done with or without the help of a lawyer, but the legal complexities of quashing a warrant dictate that it is in your best interests to speak with an experienced attorney before making a hasty decision.
It is certainly true that you should not ignore an outstanding warrant, as even a simple traffic stop could lead to your arrest.
However, talking to a criminal defense lawyer first will ensure you explore and ultimately pursue your best legal option to quashing the warrant.
How a Phoenix Criminal Defense Lawyer Can Help
Your Phoenix criminal defense lawyer can explain to a judge the reasons for your failure to appear in court and/or file a motion to quash your warrant based on Arizona law.
Further, your lawyer can assess the facts of your outstanding warrant and create effective pre-trial and trial strategies that protect your legal rights.
At Tyler Allen Law Firm, PLLC, we provide defendants with a strong legal defense when there is an outstanding warrant for your arrest.
Contact us today to discuss your Phoenix arrest warrant so that we can help you resolve your legal issues.