Law enforcement officers locked down Melbourne Square mall for two hours in pursuit of two suspects who had fled police during a traffic stop. Those men were not found — but the owner of the suspect vehicle, Ahmad Osama H. Youssef, was arrested on a bench warrant for failing to appear in court during his Oct. 7 jury trial for battery and two counts of theft. During the lockdown, Barnes said the owner of the suspect vehicle approached a West Melbourne police officer and said his car had been stolen, and thereafter was arrested.
An arrest warrant in Florida is typically known as a Capias, or bench warrant. Most arrest warrants are issued for many reasons including:
– Violation of probation
– Committing a felony crime in the state that the warrant is to be issued
– Failure to comply with a court order
– Failure to appear for court
Most arrest warrants are either bond warrants or no-bond warrants. This means that the judge issuing the warrant looks at the particular set of circumstances surrounding the request for the warrant, the nature of the offense itself, and whether the offense is something that is serious enough for the person it is issued against to be incarcerated until their next scheduled court date.
One can be arrested without a warrant for an offense committed before an officer or under certain other circumstances. However, not all crimes are committed in front of officers, and for some of those crimes, they are caused by forgetfulness. In compliance with Florida law, the court may issue a warrant or capias request for the arrest of any resident or non-resident who committed a crime in the state. The warrant allows all law enforcement officers, state, county, and municipal, in the state to arrest one and may be executed in any county in Florida.
Any type of warrant in Jacksonville is serious, whether it involves a new crime, failure to appear, failure to comply with probation terms or other difficulties in the legal system. Unfortunately, leniency is not often given to those who do not comply with a scheduled court date. In fact, many judges take the crime very seriously, being quick to impose harsh penalties for those who are found to have failed to appear in court. In most cases, the only way to avoid such consequences is to provide a defensible reason for one’s absence.
As soon as one becomes aware of a warrant or knows one failed to appear for a court date, one should contact an experienced attorney who can work with the Judge to recall the warrant or capias in exchange for appearance for court. At the resolution of most cases, it usually looks more favorable for the defendant who voluntarily turns himself in immediately after learning of the warrant as opposed to a defendant who had no intention of coming forward to face the charges and had to tie up a lot of law enforcement resources and possibly create a dangerous situation to bring them in.
After a failure to appear in court the judge may issue a no bond warrant for one’s arrest. In some cases the court may allow for a bond on the failure to appear warrant. An accused who missed court may have several options including:
– immediately reporting to the jail to surrender on the failure to appear warrant or capius;
– hiring an experienced attorney to file a “motion to surrender” in the courtroom (instead of jail) on the failure to appear capius or warrant in order to attempt to avoid another set of arrest records, mug shots and finger prints.
The consequences of having the outstanding warrant can include being ineligible to collect certain government, state or local benefits such as social security income, unemployment compensation, or financial aid, having one’s driver’s license suspended indefinitely until one surrenders, and possibly a finding of contempt if that option is exercised by the court.
Many times throughout Jacksonville, accused parties face charges they never knew of and warrants they never thought would be out on them, and because of their lack of knowledge, they suffer at the hands of a very powerful state operated legal system. Fortunately, one does not have to fight the battle for one’s freedom alone. If one obtains an experienced Jacksonville failure to appear crimes defense attorney to fight the case and ensure one’s rights are protected, one can be sure that one will know one’s rights, know what the prosecution and police have access to, and will be able to make sure that wrongfully obtained evidence will not be used against one.
The Forbess Law Firm has been aiding clients who face criminal charges in Jacksonville for more than a decade and are here to provide aggressive criminal defense to anyone accused of a crime. If you or a loved one require a Jacksonville criminal defense lawyer, contact our firm today. We are available through our website or by calling us at 904-634-0900.
Additional Source: Pursuit of suspects prompts police to lockdown Melbourne mall, Floridatoday.com