When you have been accused of committing a crime, it might seem that the criminal justice system is cold, cruel and impersonal. While this can sometimes be the case, just as often you will find judges who want to work with a criminal (especially a nonviolent one) to find a punishment that will help rehabilitate them into society, rather than remove them from it. If you are eligible for bail, that is already a good sign that you might be able to secure a punishment other than time served in jail. Here is a closer look at six common alternatives to jail time, from your bail bondsman in Angleton:
- Probation: The most commonly used and widely known alternative, probation is often used in conjunction with one of the other following alternatives. Essentially, being on probation means that the courts are keeping a close eye on you, and you cannot do anything that would indicate that you are slipping back into criminal behavior. Probation often comes with travel limits as well.
- Community service: Rather than spend time toiling away in prison, community service gives you the chance to actually right your wrongs and give back to your local community. While the typical idea of court-appointed community service involves picking up trash and doing menial labor, judges will sometimes give people the chance to choose which type of service would be best for them.
- House arrest: Having to stay at home for months on end might not seem very appealing, but it is certainly a better option than going to prison. Those placed under house arrest usually have to wear an ankle bracelet. While some people on house arrest cannot leave unless there is an emergency, others are simply given curfews they must meet.
- Fines: A fine is pretty straightforward: you have wronged society, and now you must pay a fee to the criminal justice system to help correct that wrong. Fines are usually used to punish minor marijuana transgressions, shoplifting, first time DUIs and other nonviolent offenses.
- Restitution: Restitution also involves paying money, but rather than paying the state, you are directly paying the person you have wronged. Restitution is usually used to resolve cases involving property damage, physical injuries or other undue burdens on the victim.
- Rehab: Finally, rehabilitation exists as a viable alternative to jail time for defendants involved in drug or alcohol related crimes. Rather than going to prison, the defendant has an opportunity to get clean and turn their life around. Typically, the defendant will remain on probation for some time after completing a rehab program.
While none of the options on this list are necessarily enticing, they all share one appealing trait in common: the chance to avoid serving time in prison. If you or a loved one is currently out on bail, take the opportunity to speak with your lawyer about which of these options might work for your case.
If you are in need of a quality and reliable bail bondsman in Angleton while your case is pending, we hope you will trust Brazoria County Bail Bonds.