Monthly Archives

July 2017

Struggles of Getting Arrested Out of State

By | Carls Bail Bonds

While Carls Bail Bonds in Visalia is one of the best bail bond companies in California, they cannot help you if you or a loved one is arrested outside of the state. Carls Bail Bonds in Visalia can only operate within California, so you would need to find a local out-of-state bail bond company to assist you for your bail bond needs. This can take more time and produce more stress since it is not close to home.

No matter what state someone is in, getting arrested is never a good thing, though getting arrested within your home state is slightly better. Dealing with an out-of-state arrest is more troublesome and will require more from the defendant. As mentioned, the defendant will have to work and communicate with a local bail bond company, but in addition to that, the defendant will need to seriously rework their schedule to prioritize the situation.

The defendant will have a court date, but it will not occur in California. It will occur where the defendant was arrested. In some cases, the court will allow the defendant to return home and have only their lawyer present at the court hearing. However, for most people and situations, this is not the case. This means that the defendant will need to make arrangements to stay in the area for the duration of their trial, or they will need to travel back and forth if they are allowed to travel while out on bail.

In order for the defendant to allow this to happen, they will need to communicate with their family and employer to work out some solution or schedule. There will be serious consequences here. A wife may have to handle work and the children on her own at home, for example. As for the workforce, the defendant would not be receiving paychecks for some time, or the employer may decide they have to let this employee go altogether. This adjustment will be very strenuous not only on the defendant, but for friends, family, and other acquaintances who are affected by this sudden schedule and lifestyle change.
 

If you are doing any traveling, whether it is for business or for pleasure, be mindful of your words and actions. You do not want something to go terribly wrong for you.

Southern California’s Dog-Friendly Parks and Beaches

By | Carls Bail Bonds

Dogs are our best friends. Their owners are responsible for keeping them safe, which also includes keeping the public safe. This is why there are certain laws dog owners must follow, from needing to keep them on a leash in most places, to getting them vaccinated.

Whenever a dog owner takes their dog out, the dog must be kept on a leash. Some communities require leashes to be 6-8 feet long; other communities have no leash length requirement. By keeping a dog on a leash, the owner is taking precaution to keep their dog safe, like avoiding getting hit by a passing car. In addition, they also keep other people safe, like avoiding a dog attack or scaring others who are uncomfortable around dogs. If a dog attack occurs, the owner can be arrested and charged with a crime, even if the owner did not encourage the fight and tried to stop their dog. They would have to pay a fine and possibly spend time in jail. In some situations, they may also lose their dog, or their dog will be put down.

Dog owners who have had time to train their dogs to be obedient and friendly would love to let their best friend off the leash and play with other friendly dogs as well. At most California parks and beaches, this is not allowed because the dogs must remain on their leash. However, there are some dog-friendly parks and beaches, meaning the dog can run around leash-free, and a handful of such welcoming locations can be found throughout Southern California.
 

Dog Parks
• Alice’s Dog Park in Pasadena
• The Boneyard in Culver City
• Griffith Park Dog Park in Los Feliz
Laurel Canyon Dog Park in Studio City
• Silver Lake Off-Leash Dog Park in Silver Lake
• Whitnall Off-Leash Dog Park in North Hollywood

 

Dog Beaches
• Arroyo Burro Beach in Santa Barbara
• Fiesta Island in San Diego
• Huntington Dog Beach in Huntington Beach
• Rosie’s Dog Beach in Long Beach

 
At these dog-friendly beaches and parks, owners are still responsible for their pet and making sure it is getting along well with others. Being a dog owner is like being a parent. In fact, many future parents test their parental responsibilities by getting a dog first. So, treat your dog like you would your kid. Raise it, love it, care for it, and keep it and yourself out of trouble. Just like you could face legal consequences if your teenage kid broke the law, you could face legal consequences if your dog causes injury to another.

Wildfires in California Do Not Always Start Because of Weather

By | Carls Bail Bonds

Summertime is the peak of California’s wildfire season. This is when firefighters are more frequently out for long periods trying to contain and put out brush fires before they spread any further. The majority of California’s wildfires are in Southern California where the hot, dry air along with the winds encourage the fires to spread quickly, leading to residential evacuations and for some, the destruction of property as it gets engulfed in flames.

Wildfires can and do begin because of the weather, but some are even started by arson, which is a crime that is defined as intentionally setting a fire to property or land. Some wildfires also begin because of reckless burning, another crime where a person begins a fire but fails to put it out or control it, thereby allowing the fire to spread and endanger property and human life. An example of reckless burning is throwing a lit cigarette into shrub even though posted signs say not to do this. That tiny little cigarette that barely has a flame can cause a major wildfire.

There are varying penalties for arson and reckless burning in California, and it largely depends on the extent of the damage the fire has done. Believe it or not, intentionally setting fire to one’s own property is also illegal, and is a misdemeanor. If the fire damages other property and/ or forest land, or causes injury to others that person may be charged with a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on the circumstances. However, if the intent was malicious, the arsonist is charged with a felony. If someone dies from the fire, the arsonist may also be charged with murder, in addition to arson.

Fires are dangerous and can quickly get out of hand. The damage can be extensive, and the consequences are set to match that. Like we mentioned above, you can be amazed at how big a fire can grow from one small source.

DUIs Are No Joke in California

By | Carls Bail Bonds

Instead of treating the gang to a final round of shots at last call, treat them to a pitcher of water and some fast food. This will jump-start the mind and body to sober up so you can all get home safe and sound. It is the responsible thing to do and although your buds may give you the thumbs down to denying alcohol, they will definitely give you the thumbs up for feeding them.

Consider the benefits of having one less drink. You save money, for one. Secondly, you have a little more awareness. Rather than driving home yourself, hop into a Lyft or Uber so that you can rely on this sober driver to get you home safely. While this will cost you a few bucks, at least you do not have to worry about accidents and DUIs.

A first offense DUI in California can be at least $40-50,000. This cost covers revoked licenses, attending a mandatory driving education course, the fees for getting your vehicle towed and impounded, and increased car insurance premiums for the next few years. However that figure does not include hospital/ medical fees, property damages, and repairs. It also does not cover legal fees should you be taken to court. Repeat DUI offenders will consequently face harsher costs.

Of course, loss of money is not the worst thing to risk when a person drives intoxicated. The worst thing they risk is their life and the lives of others, which is anyone out on the road at the same time. Getting into a fatal accident is something that would haunt this person forever.

So, if you cannot rely on your friends to be the responsible ones, then you need to be the responsible one and know when it is time to stop drinking, and how to get everyone home safely.

Punishments for Identity Theft

By | Carls Bail Bonds

Identity theft is a very serious crime to commit because it can cause quite a big problem for the victim in multiple ways. It can take them a lot of time, money, and energy, to get things fixed and straightened out for themselves.

Identity theft is when someone’s personal and sensitive identification information is used by another individual or group. The person, whose identity is stolen, never consented to have their information used to obtain goods, services, and other information. The most common forms of identity theft are when:

• Someone uses another person’s credit card information to complete a purchase for themselves.
• Someone attempts to escape criminal liability by identifying themselves to authorities as another person.
• Someone intends their victim to suffer financial or emotional loss by taking on their identity.

In California, identity theft can be punished as a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on the circumstances. If someone is charged with a misdemeanor, then they can be put into jail for up to 1 year and pay a fine of up to $1,000. If they face a felony charge, then they are facing up to 3 years in prison and up to a $10,000 fine. Furthermore, if that person faces federal prosecution, they are looking at up to 30 years in prison and a bigger fine.

In order to best protect yourself against identity theft, keep personal documents with sensitive identification information secured away, such as bank information, passports, and social security cards. Do not provide this information to others through email and over the phone if you are unsure or the service does not require it. It could be someone phishing for your information. If you believe your identity has been stolen or compromised, contact authorities immediately so they can investigate the matter.

Should Body Cam Footage Be Released to the Public

By | Carls Bail Bonds

Excessive force and authority is a constant topic in today’s news. This alongside the discussion of officer’s wearing and using body cameras that will provide additional evidence in the most critical and high profile cases. Most notably, incidents that result in the officer killing the person they pulled over or stopped on the street. There has been public outcry for such incidents, with the public demanding justice and the footage of police body cameras. Well, California could be one step closer to that.

A bill was introduced earlier this month that would make police body camera footage view-able to the public if it is considered to be of public interest. This would be incidents where police force is used, or when there are political protests that turn violent. There is a level of distrust between the public and the law in many communities where the people do not feel protected by those who are sworn to protect them. The bill aims to change that.

Currently in California, there is no statewide rule that says all police officers must wear and use body cameras. There is also no statewide rule that says footage can or cannot be released to the public. Instead, it is up to local law enforcement decision. Many police departments now require their officers to wear body cameras; others are testing them out. Body cameras are becoming more routine with departments. Although this has gained some traction, the accessibility of the footage is still the part that is mostly up in the air. Some departments do release footage to the public, but others do not.

Other states are also in the same boat as California, trying to figure out the best solution to remedy the relationship between the public and the police when it comes to these high profile cases of police brutality and force.

The California bill, introduced by a Bay Area assemblyman, will need to clear both houses of the Legislature before mid-September.

What Expunging a Record Means

By | Carls Bail Bonds

To expunge a criminal record is to essentially erase or remove a prior conviction from your record so that others who conduct a background search on you cannot view it. Expunging a criminal record is not only to ease the individual’s mind and conscience, but it also means that they can worry less when a prospective employer or landlord does a background check before making a hiring or rental acceptance decision. In fact, if a record is expunged, the person does not even have to discuss it because an expunged record is like it does not exist.

Defendants may be eligible to apply to have certain misdemeanors or felonies expunged from their criminal record. There are some requirements to meet first, including completing probation for the offense and having not served time in prison. They also must not currently be charged with a criminal offense. Anyone who has been convicted of certain sex crimes involving minors are not eligible to have their record expunged.

To apply for a record expungement, a person will have their case analyzed, and they will need to be updated on the current and relevant law. Paperwork will need to be filed within the proper time frame, and there will be a court hearing to attend. This is when they will learn if the judge grants expungement.

There are benefits to having a record expunged that bring the individual relief. This includes having greater chances at securing employment, being allowed to obtain a professional license, not being impeached by this record as your credibility as a witness, and more. At the same time, there are certain things the expungement will not do for the individual, and this includes restoring gun rights, not having to register as a sex offender, and overturning a suspended license.

If you believe your loved one is eligible to have a criminal record expunged, talk to your lawyer and they will be able to better advise the opportunity.

Save a Dog from a Hot Vehicle

By | Carls Bail Bonds

In California, it is legal to break into a stranger’s car in order to save a dog that is trapped and suffering, but it is still illegal to do so to save a child. Last year, California implemented a law that protects the individual from civil damages if they save a dog. However, California has yet to figure out and implement laws that would protect the individual if they did this to save a child.

This does not mean that a person can break into a car to save a dog anytime they want. It is only forgiving under certain conditions, and the individual is only protected if they comply with certain rules.

On any given day, the temperature inside a vehicle is higher than the temperature outside. Now, think about conditions if the outside temperature was 85 degrees on a summer day. If a dog is locked inside the vehicle, then a person can consider breaking in to save the dog if it is suffering. The person has to be sure that there is no other way to get the dog out and the owner is nowhere to be seen. In other words, this Good Samaritan has to be sure that they have exhausted all other methods to save the dog.

If they break into the car to save the dog, they will need to alert the cops of the incident and stay at the scene until the cops arrive so they can provide their statement. If the good samaritan does all of this, they will be protected from charges. If they neglect even one thing, especially staying after breaking into the vehicle, they may be charged.

If you are the owner and have a dog or a young child with you on a hot day, and you need to park your car to run a quick errand, it is best to bring your child with you. If the store is pet-friendly, bring the pup, or at least leash him or her outside in the shade. It is illegal to leave a child who is under the age of 7 unattended in a vehicle unless they are being supervised by another who is at least 12 years old. Hot vehicles become deadly weapons very fast, so it is a very risky to leave a pet or young child in the vehicle without proper safety measures.

Understanding the Miranda Rights

By | Carls Bail Bonds

The right to remain silent and the right to have a lawyer represent you are two rights every arrested person has. These are the Miranda Rights, which the police are required to read to every arrestee.

The Miranda Rights are named after Ernesto Miranda, who was arrested in the 1960s and accused of kidnapping, rape, and robbery. During his trial, it was revealed that the police used intense and intimidating interrogation methods to lead him to confess. The court found this unjust and unfair, so his conviction was overturned. After additional evidence and eyewitnesses, he was eventually found guilty once again.

Miranda’s case, along with another in the 1960s, Escobedo vs. Illinois, brought about the Miranda Rights. The defendants in both cases were unaware of their full rights: the right to remain silent until their lawyer was present, and the right to have a lawyer during interrogation.

If a defendant is unaware of these rights, then they are more likely to offer a confession, whether or not they are truly guilty of the crime they are being accused of. In addition, without a lawyer, the police may use intimidating interrogation methods in order to force a confession. The suspect would give in, for they have no lawyer present to help fight back and protect them.

It is the suspect’s best interest to have a lawyer. If they can afford a private attorney who can specialize in the defendant’s case, they should go with that option. A private attorney will have more time to spend on the defendant’s case. In return however, they can be costly to afford. If the defendant cannot afford a private attorney, the court will appoint one to them. Court-appointed lawyers are neither ill-prepared nor unqualified, but they do tend to have more cases and clients to take care of than a private attorney. Thus, they must split attention and efforts across their multiple clients.

If your loved one has been arrested, the police will read them their Miranda Rights. It is very unlikely the police will neglect or forget to do so but in that small chance it happens, you can use that oversight as leverage. Make sure your loved one is aware of their rights, and from there take it one step at a time to get your loved one home and through trial.

Responsibilities of Being a Parent

By | Carls Bail Bonds

Being a parent takes an incredible amount of responsibility, including legal responsibility. Until a child turns 18 and becomes a legal adult, their parents are responsible for them in many ways. This includes needing to pay for consequences should their child get into trouble, cause problems, and/or get arrested. The parents can hold their children accountable at home, but the justice system will hold the parents accountable too.

If a child damages other property, such as graffiti’s a wall, breaks a window, or runs a car into another, the parents will have to cover the financial responsibilities of paying for the damages. The money goes towards the victim or person who owns the damaged property. It is called paying restitution because it compensates for the losses or damages the child caused. The parents may decide to punish their child by withholding allowance or setting a curfew, but from a legal standpoint of paying for the damages, the money will come from the parents.

If a child is arrested, then fees are involved for lawyers and juvenile detention services like food and laundry. Again, this money comes from the parents’ pockets.

One thing that parents would not have to pay for if their child is arrested, is bail or a bail bond. The reason this is not a factor to them, is because youths who are arrested are not given the option to post bail to be released. Instead, after a record is made of the minor’s arrest, the police will usually release them back to the custody of their parents or legal guardians. Alternatively, depending on the situation, the police may send the child to an agency or shelter that will look after them, or put them in juvenile detention. The child and the parents will be given a notice to appear in court to settle the matter. Bail and bail bonds are reserved only for adults.

Raising a child is not easy and there is no perfect solution to doing it. It is hard, and it is a learning experience. You and your family will manage to get through it together. Once they turn 18, they are legally on their own, though as a parent, it will be your natural instinct to always protect them. The good news is that when they turn 18, any records they had as a minor will be sealed, meaning that no one will be able to view or access those records. This clean slate is meant to encourage them for their future and not let adolescent mistakes prevent them from succeeding.

California’s Gun Laws FAQ’s

By | Carls Bail Bonds

There are very strict rules when it comes to California’s gun laws. These rules outline who is allowed to purchase a gun, when they can purchase, how many and how often they can purchase, how the gun must be stored at home, who may use the gun, when the gun may be used, and more. The gun laws for California are some of the strictest in the United States. Here are some frequently asked questions, and the answers to them.

Can I lend my gun to a family member?
A firearm can be given to a person’s adult child or adult grandchild as long as it is a legal firearm. A firearm can also be given to a person’s spouse. However, a person cannot lend or give the gun to any other relative, such as siblings, aunts and uncles, and cousins. If the firearm they receive is a handgun, they must first get a Handgun Safety Certificate, and fill out paperwork for the Department of Justice.

Can I sell my gun to a family member, or anyone else?
If a person wishes to sell their gun to another individual, they must do so through a licensed California firearms dealer. The recipient must also pass the background check.

How many handguns can a person own?
Californians are limited to one handgun purchase per 30 day period, but there is no limit on how many they can own total.

What are the proper ways to store my guns at home?
Guns must be kept out of reach of children. If a child manages to get a hold of the gun, the owner can face felony charges. Guns should be kept in locked containers or drawers. It is recommended that guns be locked away unloaded.

Who is and is not allowed to purchase and own a firearm?
Anyone who wishes to make a firearm purchase must first pass a background check. People who have been convicted for certain misdemeanors or any felony are not allowed to purchase or own a firearm in California. In addition, there are restrictions based on drug abuse, being held involuntarily because they were deemed a threat to themselves or others, driving records, mental conditions, domestic abuse, restraining orders, and more. Of-age individuals who pass the background check and pass their test will be allowed to purchase and own a legal firearm.

If you are a gun owner or plan to own a gun in the future, your knowledge of the gun laws will extend much farther than these frequently asked questions. Guns must be handled safely and responsibly so they do not end up injuring or killing anybody. Consequences for misusing a gun are not forgiving, and no one wants to have to deal with that.

Alcohol Friendly Beaches

By | Carls Bail Bonds

California is known for many things, including its many beaches and the beautiful weather. Everyone flocks to the shores to play in the sand and water, to relax and have a good time with friends, and to eat but not drink alcohol. It is illegal to drink alcohol at the majority of California’s beaches. However, those who prefer a little booze with their beach trip are not out of luck, because there are a few beaches that are alcohol friendly.

Carmel Beach
Located in Northern California, Carmel-by-the-Sea is known as a quaint, picturesque town that is even more captivating because of its alcohol friendly beach. You can have your choice of alcoholic beverage in between your surf runs, while you lay on the beach, in between beach sports, or during a bonfire. The only rules are that the drinking must be done by 10 PM and you cannot have a keg.

Paradise Cove, Malibu
At Paradise Cove, beach goers are allowed to sip on beer, wine, or champagne anytime between 8 AM and sunset. There is also a restaurant on-site where you may order drinks and food. Parking can be somewhat of a turn off here, as the fee to park on site is a bit steep. The restaurant will validate your parking, if you dine there. Otherwise, if you are adamant on hitting Paradise Cove, you will have to park further away on the street and walk in.

Kehoe Beach
If you walk a half mile along the northern end of Great Beach at Point Reyes, you will hit Kehoe Beach where you definitely can bust out your alcohol, as long as it is not in a keg. Note that the beach closes at 11 PM so everyone must be off it by then, so give yourself a little time to make the short walk back to your vehicle.

In order for these beaches to remain alcohol friendly, remember to not leave a mess and not be disruptive and rowdy to the point you are causing a disturbance for others. Think of these alcohol friendly beaches as privileges that you would not want taken away. Keep the beaches clean and the fun open to others by drinking responsibly and cleaning up after yourself. Finally, remember to be mindful of how you will be getting home at the end of your beach day. Designate a sober driver or know when to stop drinking so you can sober up.

Road Trip Checklist

By | Carls Bail Bonds

Summer is the perfect time to take a road trip with friends. It is vacation season and the weather is perfect for you to drive your convertible with the wind blowing in your hair. Whether you have a destination in mind or you prefer to just drive, make sure you have packed your essentials such as sunglasses, sunblock, swim suits, and have your driving playlist ready. Before you get on the road, make sure to do a safety check of your vehicle.

• Check that all exterior lights of the car work properly: head lights, tail lights, brake lights, signal lights, and high beams.
• Make sure your horn is working, and loud for others to hear.
• All passengers need to be wearing a seat-belt. Make sure those function properly.
• Hopefully it will not rain, but in case it does, you will want your windshield wipers working.
• Take a look at your tires. Do they need air? Are the treads good to withstand your road trip? Take a spare tire with you as well.
• Open up the hood of your car and fill up the fluids.
• Get your brakes checked and make sure they are good to go.

By making sure your car is road trip-ready, you are taking extra precautions to avoid accidents. In addition, you could also be saving yourself from being pulled over and ticketed. A few extra minutes to look over your car can save you thousands of dollars, if you really think about it.

If you think you will be driving across state borders, keep in mind that driving rules might not be the same. For example, you might not be allowed to make a right on a red light or you might not be allowed to pump your own gas at a gas station and instead, a store clerk is supposed to do this for you. Overall, drive with safety in mind, as you would anywhere, because getting ticketed, pulled over, into an accident, or arrested is a cost no one wants to worry about having to deal with, especially out-of-state.

Who Sets the High Bail Prices?

By | Carls Bail Bonds

If you have ever needed to bail a friend or family member out of jail, you have probably seen how expensive it can be. Bailing someone out of jail probably made you wonder who determines the prices for bail and bail bonds.

When people contact a bail bond company to help them bail their friend out of jail, they are usually trying to get a bail at a more affordable price. However, even a bail bond can be too expensive for some people. Some people might think that this is simply because the company is greedy, but that is not the case. Bail bond prices are actually controlled by the Department of Insurance (DOI). In California, bail bond companies have to charge 10% of the price of the bail they are paying for. Some companies are allowed to only charge 8% if the client meets certain qualifications.

So bail bond prices are determined by the bail prices. Since a judge sets a person’s bail, the case’s judge is responsible for the high bail prices, right? Wrong. Judges have more control over the pricing than bail bond companies do, but their control is still restricted as well. Judges determine a person’s bail based on a few different factors including:

• The person’s criminal record.
• The person’s ties to the community.
• The county’s bail schedule.

The last one is the most important. A bail schedule is a list of every crime and what the bail amount should be for that crime. Each county in California has its own bail schedule. This means that the same crime committed in 2 different counties could have a different bail amount. The bail schedule allows law enforcement officers to set a person’s bail before he or she has an arraignment hearing. This allows people to bail out of jail as faster, instead of having to wait for an opportunity to sit in front of a judge. At the hearing, a judge is allowed to alter the amount to better match the situation, but only slightly.

What this means is, whoever creates the bail schedule is responsible for the high bail prices. Roughly every year, a county will select a committee of judges to create the county’s bail schedule. These judges get together and go over every possible crime. They assign each one a set dollar amount. When they are done, this list will be used by law enforcement and courts throughout the county.

Ultimately, only a few judges are responsible for the high bail prices, not bail bond companies. If you have a problem with the high bail amounts, be sure to let your local officials and representatives know.

Strange Laws from Around the US

By | Carls Bail Bonds

It probably comes as no surprise to anybody that politicians do not always come up with the best ideas when it comes to laws. Many times, it can be argued that their hearts were in the right place, they simply failed on the delivery of the new law. Others times, there is simply no explanation for the law.

You can find proof of this, by simply looking through the different laws of not just California, but other states as well. It would seem no state is safe from have a law that would make you scratch your head in confusion.

• Women may not drive in a house coat in California.
• Citizens in Virginia must honk their horn when passing other cars.
• At a wake in Massachusetts, mourners may not have more than 3 sandwiches.
• In Iowa, tanning bed facilities must warn of the risk of getting a sunburn.
• It is considered an offense to hunt whales in Utah. Surprisingly, this is not the only landlocked state to outlaw whaling.
• Donkeys cannot be kept in a bathtub in Georgia.
• In Nebraska, it is illegal for a bar owner to sell beer unless they are simultaneously brewing a kettle of soup.
• Florida accidentally banned all smartphones and computer in internet cafes.

The list could easily continue, since there are dozens of strange laws all over the country. Some are clearly from another time period, while others are just strange. Many of them should probably be removed from state law, but that won’t happen anytime soon. Luckily, the chances of getting arrested for breaking any of these laws is slim.

Stunts Gone Wrong

By | Carls Bail Bonds

The rise of YouTube has created several celebrities on the web. The site has made it possible for ordinary people to create their own fame. This has led to hundreds of thousands of people trying to climb their way to the top. Some of these people, attempt to do crazy or insane stunts to gain a following and get views.

More often than not, these stunts end in disaster. Someone ends up getting hurt, or worse, because the performer fails to do the stunt safely they try to do the stunt right away, without any sort of rehearsal or testing.

Recently, a Minnesota woman accidentally shot her boyfriend while trying to film a stunt for a YouTube video. The plan was for her to shoot a .50 caliber Desert Eagle at a book that her boyfriend was holding in front of his chest. The thought was the book would stop the bullet. Unfortunately, that was not the end result. The woman now faces second-degree manslaughter charges and could face 10 years in prison.

The lesson here, is to not do something dangerous or life threatening just to gain popularity. It is not worth hurting yourself, or someone else. The consequences for messing up, can be far worse than you even realize.

It is Illegal to Misuse 9-1-1

By | Carls Bail Bonds

When there is an emergency that requires immediate professional attention and care, the number to dial is 911. Emergencies include reporting a fire, or a car accident. Basically anything where fire, police, or medical attention is needed in order to save a life, reduce damaged property, catch a criminal, or rescue someone.

Emergencies do not include a restaurant running out of the barbecue sauce you wanted, really disliking your neighbor because they play loud music all the time, or not knowing how to unclog your toilet. There are certain times when calling 911 is and is not warranted for an incident.

In every state, including California, it is illegal to dial 911 if it is not an emergency. A person who abuses the hotline can be charged with an infraction and fined. They can even put into jail. To provide some perspective, a person can be fined up to $1,000 and put into jail for up to 6 months if they repeatedly call 911 with the intent to annoy or harass another person, such as a neighbor they strongly dislike. For other instances where 911 is dialed for non-emergency related incidences, the person can be fined as much as $200 per dial.

Misusing 911 ties up the call center’s hotlines. This means that people who are calling for a true emergency must wait even longer to get the assistance they need immediately. Additionally, the more times a single individual dials 911, the longer others have to wait. That amounts to crucial seconds and minutes lost for those who really need emergency services.

You need to use your best judgement to know when to dial 911. If you are unsure, it is best to call 911 anyway, just in case. Before dispatching the police, an ambulance, or the fire department, they will ask you a few questions in regards to the situation to help them assess and evaluate the need for assistance. Then, they will quickly dispatch emergency services. Other times, the matter can be resolved right then and there with them guiding you over the phone or explaining, for the future, what would or would not be an emergency call. They are careful when explaining this since they do not want to discourage people from ever calling 911 again.

When can You Break into a Car without Getting into Trouble?

By | Carls Bail Bonds

Toward the end of last year, California finally made it a law to protect citizens who, in good faith and after exhausting all other options to no avail, break into hot vehicles to rescue a dog. Since the law has gone into effect, there have been few incidences where such action needed to take place. Now, summer is here and for the first time since the law went into effect, the temperatures will consistently top 70 and 80 degrees daily. This means that more dogs are vulnerable to being left alone in a hot vehicle while their owner runs an errand.

There are certain steps and conditions in order for the individual, who broke into the car, to be protected from criminal charges. This person first must be certain that there is no way of opening the vehicle without breaking in. They must identify the dog inside is indeed suffering and in danger. They must call the police to let them know of the situation, and they must stay on-site with the dog until the police arrive.

On a hot day, the temperature outside is more bearable than the inside of a vehicle. For example, on an 80 degree day, a car can get as hot as 120 degrees within 10 minutes. If it is 90 degrees outside, the car can reach 150 degrees.

While this Good Samaritan law protects individuals who break into a hot vehicles to save a pet, it does not truly protect them if they were to break into a car to save another human life, like that of a child. That is a legal grey area that California lawmakers must still work on.