Does Bail Still Need to Be Paid After an Unlawful Arrest?

Does Bail Still Need to Be Paid After an Unlawful Arrest?

For a police officer to make an arrest, they must have probable cause to do so. Unfortunately, many situations exist in which the officer did not have cause, yet took the person into custody regardless. Sadly, this means that law-abiding citizens subject to false arrests are forced to wait in jail. Typically in a criminal case, a judge will set a bail amount the defendant must pay to secure their release from custody.

But does that hold if the person was arrested unlawfully?

Yes. Even if someone was subject to an unlawful arrest, they must make bail to get out of jail. After they do, they can legally fight the injustices they were subject to.

What Is Probable Cause?

Probable cause is a standard written into the Fourth Amendment, which states that a person cannot be searched or seized without law enforcement officials first having determined this standard was met. What this means is that for a police officer to make an arrest, they must have seen or have evidence suggesting that the person accused committed a crime. It does not have to be definite that the person engaged in criminal activity, only that the totality of the circumstances lend reasonable belief that they were involved in such conduct.

For instance, say an officer observes someone walking out of a bar and driving off. The officer pulls the driver over and arrests them for DUI. In such a situation, if the officer made the arrest solely because they saw the driver come out of a bar, they did not have probable cause to take the person to jail.

However, suppose the officer saw the individual come out of the bar. As the person was traveling down the road, they were weaving between lanes and failed to stop at a traffic signal. Now, because the person committed traffic offenses, the officer has a reason to stop them. If, upon speaking with the driver, the officer notices they're slurring their words and have bloodshot eyes, they may have reasonable suspicion that the driver is under the influence of alcohol. An arrest in this scenario may be justified.

In Ohio, whether an arrest is made with or without a warrant, the officer must have probable cause to take action. If a warrantless arrest is made, and the officer did not observe the individual engaged in criminal conduct, they must tell the person why the arrest was made.

Paying Bail for Release from Jail

If a person is subject to an unlawful arrest, they must still make bail before being released from custody. It's imperative to do so, as they will better be able to handle their case and build a defense with their attorney outside of jail. Working closely with a lawyer, they can fight to prove that their arrest was unjustified.

In matters where unlawful arrests occurred, the state's evidence may be inadmissible in court, weakening the prosecution's case.

If you or a loved one was falsely arrested in Columbus or the surrounding areas, contact Andy Callif Bail Bonds at (614) 945-4334 for help getting released from jail.


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