Bakersfield Criminal Defense Detention and Arrest

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When a person is arrested for a serious crime in Bakersfield California, the accused is entitled to be released upon reasonable bail. The bail amount is based on a bail schedule which is established by the judges in each separate county. You will be advised how much your bail amount will be.

When Bakersfield Police believe they have probable cause to arrest a person for a serious crime, or felony, they will typically handcuff the suspect. The suspect will then have their mug shot taken, and they will be held at the Bakersfield police station or jail pending their ability to post the above bail amount. If the accused cannot post bail, they will appear at an arraignment at the Kern County Superior Court in Bakersfield California, at which time the judge will determine if the bail was set by schedule, and whether it should be raised, lowered or remain at the initial amount. In Bakersfield, if no formal charges are filed within a 48-hour period, as decided by the prosecution, the accused must be released from custody. If formal charges are filed, the accused must appear at an arraignment at which time the accused will have to plead guilty or not guilty and then the judge will either set bail or refuse bail.


Difference between Detention and Arrest


There is a difference between detention and arrest, and it is important to know this difference because your rights change drastically from one to the other. The police only need reasonable suspicion, in detention, in order to stop an individual. A reasonable person would
feel as though they could leave in a short amount of time. This timeframe can vary based on the circumstances of the stop. However, the U.S. Supreme Court has held that 20 minutes or so is a reasonable timeframe for detaining someone. Reasonable suspicion means that there would have been objectively reasonable circumstances to suspect that the detained individual was involved in, or was about to be
involved in a crime.

Common Reasons for Detention


In a typical detention scenario, Bakersfield Police officers will temporarily stop a person in a public place without transporting that person to another place, for the purpose of: requiring the person to justify his/her presence and activity in that location and, to identify him/herself.


Let's look at an example. The Bakersfield police see a woman loitering, or just acting suspicious, in an area of town which is known for drug sales. They can detain him for further questioning only if they have probable cause that a crime has been committed.  There must be circumstances to convince a judge that a reasonable person would believe that a Bakersfield crime has been committed. If while being detained, the police have reasonable suspicion to believe that he/she may be dangerous, they might include a “pat-down” search for weapons. However, this does not mean that the police are allowed to reach into your pockets or search your bag without permission. Although, if they feel a “bulge” that they believe to be a weapon, they can then reach in to grab it in order to protect themselves.

Other legal methods of searching during a detention may include,
• using a metal detector
• using a drug-sniffing dog
• a computer search to determine if the person has any outstanding warrants for arrest.

During a detention stop, the Bakersfield Police officers will then determine whether or not they should arrest the suspect, investigate further, or take no action at all because the original suspicion proved to be groundless. Note: because the intrusion into a person's personal rights are minimal during detention, the police are not required to inform the individual of their rights or to give Miranda warnings. Often the Bakersfield Police violated Kern County residents right's by detaining them for extended periods of time. 

When Detention Leads to Arrest In order to arrest an individual, Bakersfield police officers must have probable cause. Arrest is characterized by the idea that a person does not feel free to leave due to the actions or statements of law enforcement officers. This would normally mean that the law enforcement officer has taken the individual into custody. Custody can mean a number of things. Once a police officer has taken an individual back to the police station, it is determined that they are in custody and will most likely be arrested. However, the courts have held that custody can also mean – any situation where an individual believes that they cannot leave the scene within a short period of time.

Bakersfield police officers have probable cause to make an arrest when there are objective circumstances that lead them to believe that there is a probability or chance that an individual has been involved in, or will be involved in, a crime or any type of criminal activity.

Once an Arrest Has Occurred

Before any questions can be asked, Miranda Rights must be provided to the suspect. Following the arrest, law enforcement officers now have more leeway to search the suspect or their surroundings than they did during the detention. This is due to the fact that the level of
suspicion has risen from reasonable suspicion to probable cause and the individual has been advised of their rights. Bakersfield police often give incomplete or incorrect Miranda rights advisement.  

The police have the right to search any area they believe may hold evidence of criminal activity. Let's look at an example.

The BPD (Bakersfield police department) make a routine traffic stop and notice drugs on the floor of the car. They now have probable cause to arrest the individual. Following the arrest, they now have the right to search the individual, including reaching into his/her pockets or bags. Further, because there is probable cause to believe that the individual's vehicle contains evidence of criminal activity, a search is authorized in the vehicle where the evidence has been found.


However, even after arrest, the right to search an individual or their surroundings is still limited. For example, following the above arrest, the police do not get the automatic right to then go to the individual's home or place of employment and search those areas. They must first obtain a search warrant. Understanding Your Rights during Detention or Arrest A detention and an arrest can often happen consecutively as a law enforcement officer's level of suspicion rises. Because the detention can turn into arrest rather quickly, the individual may not know what their rights are at the different stages of detention and arrest. Understand that the Bakersfield police will often make you feel as though you cannot say no to a search, even when you can.

Knowing your rights in this aspect is important. If a law enforcement officer performs an illegal search during a detention which then leads to arrest, or if there is a search prior to arrest where the arrest was made without probable cause, then whatever they discovered during these illegal searches can be suppressed at trial. Whenever being arresting and/or searched, be sure to discuss everything with an experienced criminal attorney to ensure that your rights are protected.


Can the Bakersfield Police Enter My Home to Arrest Me?


There are certain circumstances under which a law enforcement officer can enter your home and arrest you, which will be discussed herein. However, there are constitutional safeguards under the Fourth Amendment to protect you from unreasonable search and seizure and unlawful arrest. Thus, searches and seizures of a person or their property must be reasonable under the Fourth Amendment of the Constitution.


Generally, the Bakersfield police in a non-emergency situation must have a proper warrant in order to arrest a person in their home. Moreover, they are required to knock and announce their identity and their purpose prior to attempting to enter your home with forcible
entry. If they were to violate this requirement, and then later arrested someone in the home, this arrest could be found to be unlawful. Yet, there are certain cases, usually dealing with drugs, where officials who possess warrants do not have to adhere to the knock and announce rule. All occupants of the home can be detained during the lawful search of the premises. If the police have a warrant to search the home for – let's say paraphernalia used to smoke marijuana, they may then detain the occupants of the home while they perform said search. If they were to retrieve large amounts of marijuana, they could arrest the owner of the home for possession with intent to sell. The police would question all of the occupants of the home and then determine who they believe they should arrest, other than the homeowner, for the paraphernalia.


Six exceptions to officials needing a warrant before performing a search and seizure:
• the search was conducted incident to a lawful arrest
• search of an automobile
• search conducted in plain view of the official
• search conducted with the consent of the individual
• search conducted during a stop and frisk
• search taking place during hot pursuit of a suspect.

If none of these exceptions apply, the Bakersfield police officer must obtain a valid search warrant in order
to enter your home.
Tips for a Suspect in a Criminal Case
• Never consent to a search of any kind or sign a consent form, no matter what the police say to you.
• Never discuss the case over the jailhouse phone. It is always being recorded.
• Never discuss your case with other inmates.
• Never speak with an investigator or detective without your attorney present, not for any reason

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The Martens & Brusseau Law Corporation Is Here for You

At Martens & Brusseau Law Corporation, we focus on Assault, Domestic Violence, Drug Possession, DUI, Expungement, and Juvenile Defense, and we are here to listen to you and help you navigate the legal system. Contact us today.

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