You may at some stage in the future find yourself involved in a precarious situation. They may have been arrested for a crime and while protesting innocence, have still got to go through the process. If you've ever wondered what would happen to you if this situation ever arose, here's some insight on how should you proceed to get your initial freedom and fight your case.
Know Your Fundamental Rights
In the vast majority of cases, you are allowed to free yourself from the station or county jail once you've been arrested and pending the next part of the criminal case. Note that certain very serious offences may have different repercussions, but in most cases bail is your right.
You have to apply to get the requisite amount of bail and there are different procedures. If you've been arrested, then you can seek release at any time between this occurrence and your first appearance in front of a judge. In more complicated situations, you may be eligible to bail out in between case hearings, or between sentencing and an appeal.
Know How it's Done
Most people apply for bail by going through the officer in charge at the arresting station. Sometimes, however, a refusal may be issued if the police think that you could be a flight risk, or may not show up when your court date is due. In more serious situations they may believe that you could pose a danger to others if you were released, such as a witness or somebody who has claimed to be a victim.
Know How to Take it Further
If you don't get any success at this stage, insist on going before a magistrate to apply for bail at that point. This judge will hear all sides of the argument, beginning with the police case to show why they don't believe that they should release you.
Following that, it would be your turn to convince the magistrate and you should take time to emphasise your standing in the community, the level of support you're getting from family and friends, your stellar background and the type of work that you do. You must respond to any objections the police raise and if you feel that certain conditions would bolster your case, offer them to the judge.
It's possible a deposit will be required, which is kept by the court and would be forfeit should you not show up to a hearing, or breach any imposed conditions.
No matter how convinced you are of your innocence, you must respect any conditions set down as part of your bail arrangement. If you don't, that by itself is a serious offence. Should you happen to be arrested at any time in the future, any request for bail would almost certainly be denied then.
If you have any other questions, or find yourself in this unfortunate situation, then contact a criminal lawyer as soon as possible for advice.