PC 853.7 – Violating a Written Promise to Appear in Court

PC 853.7 - Violating a Written Promise to Appear in Court

Violating a Written Promise to Appear in Court – Table of Contents

PC 853.7 – Overview

What is violating a Written Promise to Appear in Court as defined under California Penal Code 853.7?

Any person who violates their promise to appear by bail through bond or Own Recognizance (OR); or is granted a continuance of a court procedure to appear in court by any method of request in court.

PC 853.7 – Prosecuting

What happens when an accused does not appear in court as defined under California Penal Code 853.7?

A bench warrant is the vehicle that is utilized with the accused does not appear in court as specified by law or upon request by the Court. If the accused fails to appear in Court and the Court has reason to believe that there is not sufficient cause for the failure to appear, the Court shall order the bail forfeited and issue an arrest warrant for the accused.

The following are the ways for which the accused can be required to appear: (1) The accused is ordered by the Court to personally appear without bail or bond at a time and place; (2) The accused is released from custody on bail or upon surety of a represented party by bail and is released and ordered by the Court to personally appear on bond at a time and place; (3) The accused is released from custody on the accused’s own recognizance and the accused promises to personally appear without bond at a time and place; (4) The accused is released from custody and or arrest by the citing peace officer and the accused agrees to appear by signing a promise to appear personally in Court at a time and place; (5) Upon an originating Penal Code 977 authority defense counsel appears without the accused, but then the Court requests the accused to appear in Court at a time and place; (6) The accused is given a Notice to Appear in the mail due to a filed charging document, and the accused is required to appear in Court at a specific time and place; (7) The accused as required under charges of retailer theft and the 6 months duration from the time the accused was original required to appear has lapsed.

What happens when there is a nonappearance or a failure to appear on bond or bail as defined under California Penal Code 853.7?

When there is a nonappearance with bail or bond pending the Court shall declare the bail forfeited when the appearance is attributed to: arraignment; pre-trial; trial or prior to judgement. Once a declaration of a forfeiture of the bond is made by the Court, the Notice of Forfeiture shall be mailed and sent to the bail agent on the bond recorded with the court clerk. Anytime within a 180 days after the ruling of a forfeiture by the Court, the accused decides to re-appear in Court on the case for which the bail forfeiture was declared, the Court on its own motion can declare the bail forfeiture vacated and exonerated the order from the record; which at this point the accused must seek re-bailment from either the original bond agency or a new bail agent.

What is an own recognizance bond as defined under California Penal Code 853.7?

Any person who was not been charged with a capital offense, can be released on his or her Own Recognizance (OR) by the Court who will allow the accused to be released without bail requiring pledge or payment. Even if the charge is a felony or misdemeanor. The following crimes are not capable of an OR: felony offense; any violation of a misdemeanor under PC 186.22; a violation of theft under Penal Code 484; a violation of burglary under PC 459; any violation where the use of a firearm was alleged under PC 12022.2.

What are the requirements of bail under California Penal Code 853.7?

Any person after the arrest, and booking has been made, or if ordered to appear by a Notice of Appearance has been mailed, that person for having committed felony or misdemeanor can provide for release by bail. If the charge is a misdemeanor, the accused can provide a fixed sum as dictated in the bail schedule range; otherwise, the Court will require the amount of bail, or add on to the amount originally paid by the accused. A certificate of deposit will be provided to the Court Clerk, and the same provided to the arresting agency and Prosecution by the bail agent.

What are the ways that a person can pledge their promise to appear in Court as defined under California Penal Code 853.7?

Any person, who without sufficient excuse, as a defendant in a criminal procedure neglects to appear, when that appearance is requested by the court, or to do the same for surrender upon the execution of judgement and sentence that court in its discretion can issue a surety bond or own recognizance pledge to satisfy the court of its comfort in releasing the accused from custody. If the accused does not appear, the Court will instruct the clerk of the Court to enter the nonappearance or failure to appear in the minute order. The notice of the failure to appear will be mailed to the surety bond holder as a certificate if the bail exceeds $400. When the nonappearance or failure to appear is noted by the court, the surety bond posted by the bail company, or the earnest money pledged by the accused is forfeited and not refundable.

PC 853.7 – Sentencing

What are the penalties for a violation of California Penal Code 853.7?

A violation of California Penal Code 853.7 is charged as a misdemeanor. As a misdemeanor confinement will not exceed 1 year in jail with fines not to exceed $1,000 dollars.

What are examples of violations under California Penal Code 853.7?

  1. Armin, Jack’s attorney, hired Appearance Prep. They are the leading appearance agency in California. They provide a vehicle for private counsel to hire other attorneys to make arraignment appearances on criminal and civil matters throughout the State of California, when retained counsel have calendar conflicts and are unable to attend. Jack’s case was assigned to Rod. Rod has been licensed for 1 month as a member of the California Bar. Jack was arrested for Penal Code 273.5 (a) misdemeanor. The matter was set for pretrial. Armin appeared for the arraignment. The DA on the matter stipulated Armin to allow him to be released on OR so long as he returns for pretrial matters. Jack was told about the OR arrangement by Armin. The day before the pretrial, Jack was told that Rod would appear for Armin. Jack called Rod to get last-minute details regarding the pretrial appearance. Jack asked Rod if he needed to appear on the matter. Rod said he did not. Jack asked again because of the nature of the charges, and the sustained injuries allegedly sustained by his then finance. Rod reassured him that he did not need to appear. Jack told Ron that he was leaving the State with his finance to attend an Alumni event. Unfortunately, Rod did not read the case file. The next day Rod appeared for Armin and his firm and appeared on PC 977A authority for Jack. The DA did not agree to this and requested that the judge issue a bench warrant for Jack’s arrest. In addition, the DA amended the complaint per Penal Code 1009. Rod told Armin what happened, and Armin simply went “Code Red” on Jack and told him to call Jack to explain the circumstances. When told of the dilemma Jack laughed and told Rod that it was not his fault and for Rod to fix the situation. Rod attempted to get the bench warrant lift as stipulated with the DA and was unsuccessful. A day after Jack and his finance returned and a police cruiser visited their apartment and arrested Jack on the existing bench warrant.
  2. Ted violated the terms of his probation during a probation compliance probation hearing. He plead guilty to a DUI 23153 (a) and His BAC upon the arrest was .28. Ted ran into the victim’s house and totaled both family vehicles. Although there were no injuries the property damage exceeded $ 200,000. The victims were able to apprise the damages. Ted was the principal of the victim’s son’s private school. The victims accepted Teds written apology and agreed to a civil compromise. The court granted the compromise but scheduled Ted to enroll into 30 AA classes to be completed upon the next hearing. His counsel Ester was present and knew the circumstances and appeared on 977A authority. Upon the next appearance date, Ted failed to complete the 30 AA. The Judge was infuriated with Ted’s lack of responsibility, adjourned his case, and placed his matter on the afternoon calendar ordering his appearance. Ted was on the other side of town negotiating business and felt Ester could smooth things out. When the Court called Ted’s matter, Ester explained that Ted was making a fundraising presentation. The Court did not feel this was sufficient cause for his absence. The DA amended their complaint upon request to the court to include Penal Code 1009. And a bench warrant was issued. The Sheriffs drove to Ted’s presentation and arrested him. The arrest made the evening news.

PC 853.7 – Defending

What are the exceptions to a violation of California Penal Code 853.7?

  1. Medical Emergency.
  2. Mistake in fact. Misinformation communicated by old counsel but now retained new counsel.
  3. Death.
  4. Current Detainment.
  5. Lack of Notice.

PC 853.7 – Hire a Lawyer

If you or someone you love has been arrested concerning a failure to appear in a court proceeding that promoted additional charges under Penal Code 853.7 which possibly forfeited bail. Seppi Esfandi, Principal Attorney of The Esfandi Law Group, APLC, his staff, and Attorneys are delighted to discuss your legal issues and seek retainment to provide solutions.

Call Us for a FREE Case Review: 310-274-6529

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