What To Do If Your Friend Just Got Arrested?
If someone you know has been arrested, you’re probably in a bit of a panic, wondering what comes next. You can do things to help, but you need to know how to work the system if you’re going to be of assistance.
If You’re There During the Arrest
If you’re present when your friend is arrested, there are some critical steps you can take. Most importantly, it would be best if you tried to remain calm and polite at all times, and try to get your friend to do the same. You can ask the police officer questions politely, such as whether your friend is being arrested or only detained, what the charges are, or which jail they will be taken to. Don’t argue with the officer, as you’re not going to convince him or her to let your friend go, and at worst, you’ll only make the situation worse for your friend or get arrested yourself.
If Your Friend Calls from Jail
If you wake up in the middle of the night to a collect call from the county jail, much of the same advice applies — stay calm and try to keep your friend calm. In this case, you at least don’t have to worry about aggravating a police officer, but there are other things to think about.
Don’t ask your friend to explain anything about what happened over the phone. These calls are usually recorded, and anything your friend says to you can be used as evidence against them. So don’t let them confess to you in your phone call. You also need to keep them on track to get the information you need to help, like what jail they’ve been taken to and what the charge is, but don’t press for details. Remind them not to speak to the cops without a lawyer.
Bail Your Friend Out and Find a Lawyer
Your friend’s most pressing concern at this point is probably how to get out of jail as soon as possible. This is where you can help. Unfortunately, it can take some time, so you want to start the process as soon as you can.
Your friend will most likely be given a bail amount. If you can afford to pay the cash, you can post this to the court in exchange for your friend’s freedom, but most likely, it’ll be a lot more money than you can afford to part with. In this case, you need to contact a bail bondsman, who will put up the full amount in exchange for a fee of some fraction of the cost (usually 10%).
Next, you need to find out if your friend has a lawyer or needs help finding one. It may be important to know what the charge is to find the appropriate type of lawyer, but in most cases contacting a criminal defense attorney like thefloridatriallawyer.com will be your best bet. Make sure your friend knows not to talk to the police without a lawyer present to advise him, and get that lawyer your friend’s information as soon as possible. It’s essential for the lawyer to know the defendant’s information, the charge, and where he’s being held. Your friend needs the guidance of a competent and experienced defense attorney to get the best possible outcome of their case.