Getting arrested in itself can be stressful enough but the prospect of getting arrested when out-of-state brings on a whole different set of challenges. Here is a guide on what to expect if you get arrested across state lines.
Misdemeanor vs Felony
The first thing to know about out-of-state arrests is the severity of the charges has a huge impact on how much of hassle you will have to go through in order to put this behind you. If the charges against you are a misdemeanor then you may be able to hire a local lawyer to be your proxy in hearings so that you don’t have to physically travel back to the arrest location to defend yourself. This is of course extremely beneficial if you were arrested on vacation or just far away from home in general because you won’t have to try and book tickets or take off work just to appear in court. Felonies, on the other hand, will cause a lot more headaches if you live far from your arrest location. This is because you will not be able to have a proxy and it will be mandatory for you to appear in person.
Just like any in-state arrest, you will notice that every jurisdiction has a different set of laws. This is also true for the various jurisdictions in other states. What may be illegal in the town you are visiting may not be illegal at your jurisdiction back home which can be kind of confusing. However, the laws will always apply to whatever jurisdiction you are in despite whether or not you are aware of these laws.
Prosecution will follow even if you leave
If you are released on bond and decide to just flee back to your home state without appearing at your scheduled court hearing then it is important to know that it will not relieve you from prosecution and will actually make things much worse. This is because despite differences in states and jurisdictions, they still all work together. So if you were to get arrested in California but go back home to Nebraska, the jurisdiction is California can ask the law enforcement in Nebraska to send you back and that will lead to additional files and charges. It’s understandable that the whole process can be intimidating and very inconvenient but running from it will hurt you more than it helps.
No personal recognizance
The last thing to note is that when it comes to out-of-state arrests, personal recognizance is pretty much never offered. This is because, when a defendant is from another state it already put them in a high flight risk category. The courts need the incentive to be sure you come back because it is just to easy to run and not come back. Because of this, it can be considered automatically a more severe experience to be arrested outside of your own jurisdiction than within.
In the end, there is no denying that being arrested while away from home is not a fun or easy experience but there are ways, depending on the severity of the crime, that can allow you to take care of the entire incident and not have to turn your entire world upside down.