In some unfortunate cases, those who have used a bail bond agent to assist them with paying their bail after being incarcerated will break the terms of their bail release. The most common such behavior is a failure of the individual to attend their required court date following their release, but others may include associating with known criminals, committing other crimes or similar issues.
At Beehive Bail Bonds, we’re happy to provide 24/7 bail bond services to a wide range of clients in Summit County and numerous other parts of Utah, including both those who have been incarcerated and their friends or family who might be assisting them through this situation. While our services are meant to help clients, they also come with important disclaimers about what happens if you fail to appear to for court or engage in any other behavior that may result in revocation of your bail and loss of bail money. In these situations, our bondsmen may take a few different actions to locate fugitives and/or assure for the return of our money. Here’s an important primer.
Also known in some circles as bounty hunters, fugitive recovery agents are third parties who contract with bail bond agents and related parties to help locate fugitives. When a bail bond agent posts bond for an individual, they are taking on the risk of that individual failing to appear in court as required. When this happens, the bonding company is typically out a considerable amount of cash.
Rather than sustain this lost money, bond agents will often rely on fugitive recovery agents. A typical fugitive recovery agent will often employ many different strategies to locate a fugitive, including the use of GPS tracking devices and other popular technology. Sometimes, they will even work to track down relatives or friends of the individual who may be able to assist in finding them. In other cases, though, locating a fugitive is as simple as checking their Facebook page or other social media profiles for an indication that someone has moved away or left the area.
When a fugitive recovery agent has determined that an individual has moved from their registered address, they may hire private investigators to track down more information about the person and help make contact. If there is some indication that an individual is working in a certain area or interacting with friends who may be able to learn more personal information, a private investigator may also be used to track down this information for fugitive recovery agents.
Often, fugitives who have been located by a private investigator or other such professionals will find themselves confronted and photographed before being taken into police custody for further penalties or fines associated with their bail jumping behavior. In addition to providing much-needed services to bail bond agencies and their clients, many also offer training services to law enforcement officers who are not as familiar with the strategies that are used for fugitive recovery.
It should be noted that while this may bother some people from a moral standpoint, there are very few limits on what a fugitive recovery agent can do to help locate or identify a fugitive — as long as they stay within the law, of course. For instance, some recovery agents may use tricks, such as telling a fugitive they’ve won a contest and need to come to a given location to collect their prize. When the fugitive shows up, they will be arrested.
If you’re entering a bail bond situation, you should also be aware that in many cases, fugitive recovery agents are licensed to enter a fugitive’s property without any warrant whatsoever. Many of the typical rules that prohibit police or law enforcement from entering your property do not apply when you’re a fugitive in this situation. However, laws for this in Utah are a bit stricter, and warrants are typically required — more on this below.
As we noted above, bail bond agents are the most common party who will often engage bounty hunters for their services. However, they are not the only ones.
Sometimes, friends or family members of an individual may decide to enlist the help of fugitive recovery agents to try and locate them. Some states have outlawed the use of bounty hunters by private citizens, but Utah has not been one of them.
As we touched on above, rules and regulations for fugitive recovery agents will vary depending on which state you’re in. In Utah, bounty hunters are not allowed to enter a property without having a warrant. However, bail bond agents and their employees can go anywhere they want to in order to find a fugitive who has failed to appear in court. In many cases, bail bond agents will also be armed with lethal weapons such as tasers or guns.
You should also be aware that in some cases, bounty hunters are allowed to pursue fugitives across state lines. Naturally, they will need to follow the rules of the state they’re entering and may even have to get a new license with that particular state before doing so. This is a common practice, though, one that ensures fugitives cannot simply flee to another state without risking consequences.
For more on fugitive recovery agents within the bail bond process, or to learn about any of our bail bond services, defense attorney recommendations or related programs in Summit County and other parts of Utah, speak to the staff at Beehive Bail Bonds today.