Crimes fall into two main categories: misdemeanors and felonies.
A misdemeanor is a lesser crime. It is usually a non-violent crime meaning it results in little physical harm to people or property. Some examples include public intoxication, speeding, trespassing and vandalism. Misdemeanors are further divided into alphabetical classes. A Class A misdemeanor, for example, is a more serious charge than a Class B or Class C misdemeanor. Minor crimes such as these may be punishable by no more than a year in jail, fines, community service or some combination of these things.
A felony, you may have predicted, is a more serious crime. These crimes cause severe harm to either people or property. Some examples of felonies include murder, assault, kidnapping, arson and theft. Like misdemeanors, felonies in the state of Georgia subdivided, only into degrees rather than classes. Felonies are punishable by a year or more in prison and significant fines. When a judge goes to set the bail for a case, it’s likely to be much higher if the crime in question was a felony (particularly a high degree felony!) and not a misdemeanor.
In Georgia, within 72 hours of your arrest, regardless of crime, you will go through arraignment. This is when the charges against you are read in open court and you have an opportunity to enter your plea. If you do not admit guilt or if you fail to enter into a plea agreement with the prosecution, your case will eventually continue on to trial. All those accused of committing a felony in Georgia are allowed a jury trial. However, you may opt for a bench trial, which means your case will be heard in front of a judge only.
The most affordable way to deal with bail set at any amount is to obtain a bail bond for it. Bonds typically cost approximately 10 percent of the full bail. Bonding companies offer them on the condition that the arrested person will show up for their trial when the time comes. As long as that condition is met, the bail bond system is the best solution we know of for exorbitant bail requirements. If you fail to appear in court after getting out on bail, using a bail bond or paying in full, a warrant will go out for your arrest. Your bond agent, if you do have one, will essentially become your bounty hunter. Our advice? It’s never a wise choice to skip a trial, no matter the crime!
If you’re looking for a bail bond, contact our office right away to begin the bailing process.