Seven Reasons Why Bail Could Be Revoked

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Although it has come under attack by some shortsighted groups and individuals in recent years, bail endures as the best way of ensuring the accused lives up to their responsibility to appear in court to face charges against them. In Colorado people arrested in Denver County, Jefferson County and elsewhere typically work with a bail bond agent who posts a bond to obtain their release.

If all goes well during the ensuing trial and the defendant is found not guilty the bond money is returned and that is the end of the story. However, in some cases, defendants can have their bail revoked (canceled). In this post, we will look at seven reasons why that might happen and what becomes of the bail bond if it does.

Seven Reasons Why Bail Might be Revoked

Bail is a component of the judicial system used to help ensure accountability. While in most cases the bail process runs its course to an intended outcome there are circumstances when the court may decide to revoke someone’s bail. Here are seven reasons that might happen.

1: Failure to appear

The primary function of bail is to ensure a defendant will appear in court to face the charges against them. If they fail to do so bail will be revoked and the defendant will become liable for the full amount. Initially, the bail bond company that issued the bond will take the loss. But they will quickly institute legal action against the defendant to recoup those losses.

2: Re-offending while out on bail

One of the conditions of being released on bail is that the defendant will behave themselves while awaiting trial. If they are incapable of that and are arrested for committing an additional offense while out on bail their bail will be revoked, and they will be returned to jail with no further bail options available to them.

3: Misrepresentation

After being arrested you will be asked questions about your finances and other aspects of your life to determine if you are eligible for bail and how much that bail should be. If the court becomes aware after releasing you on bail that you misrepresented yourself or your financial situation in any substantive manner they can, and probably will, revoke your bail and return you to jail.

4: Disrupting the courtroom

Any time you appear in front of a judge it’s in your interest to restrain yourself and show at least a modicum of respect. That means no angry outbursts, no throwing things, no threatening your accusers and no addressing the judge in a disrespectful manner. Should you appear in court with a chip on your shoulder and disrupt things the judge can revoke your bail and remand you to custody for the duration of the trial.

5: Having contact with witnesses or victims

If you believe you are innocent and are released on bail it may be tempting to confront your accuser, but that would be a serious mistake. Likewise, you may think you will have a better chance of acquittal if you intimidate a witness or witnesses. Again, you’d be mistaken. If the court hears about any of this type of activity, bail will almost always be quickly revoked. Even if you have known the person who made the accusations against you for years, absolutely no good can come from ignoring the terms of your bail and attempting to contact them.

6: Your actions raise safety concerns

If it comes to the attention of the court that you are behaving in a reckless manner while out on bail it is very likely your bail will be revoked and you will be required to await your trial behind bars. Reckless behavior generally means authorities have reason to believe you have become a threat to your own or someone else’s safety, or that you pose a threat to the community at large.

7: It is determined you have become a flight risk

A person is granted bail on the understanding that they will appear in court on a specified date to face the charges against them. If the court or someone from the bonding company suspects you are preparing to flee the state your bail may be revoked. But it doesn’t have to be the bail bond agent or an officer of the court. It might be someone you know who becomes aware of your plan and informs the court in an effort to prevent you from making a big mistake.

What Happens When Bail is Revoked

First of all, if the court has decided to revoke a person’s bail financial responsibility for the entire bail amount falls on the accused. If they did not use a bail agent and instead posted the entire amount themselves that money will not be returned to them. If bail was posted by a 24-hour bail bonds company that company would take the initial loss and then institute legal proceedings against the defendant to recoup their losses.

Possible Exceptions

It should be noted that it might be possible for the defendant to avoid total financial responsibility if bail is revoked. Courts, you see, are pretty lenient by nature. A defendant can go a long way toward helping their cause by simply acting responsibly. In this case, that means if bail has been revoked and the person turns themselves in, rather than waiting to be arrested, it's possible the judge may look favorably on their actions and reinstate bail.

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