Bail Jumping in Wisconsin Felony & Misdemeanor Penalties
Under Wisconsin Statute 946.49, anyone who intentionally fails to comply with the terms of his or her bond is guilty of bail jumping. Misdemeanor bail jumping (a Class A misdemeanor) can add 9 months in jail and fines up to $10,000 to the sentence for the original charge. For felony bail jumping (Class H felony), you could be facing another 6 years in prison and up to $10,000 in fines. Remember, this is in addition to your original sentence. Even if you are found not guilty for your original charge, you’ll still be charged with bail jumping.
OWI & Criminal Defense Attorney
Consequences for Bail Jumping in Wisconsin
|Misdemeanor Case||Class A Misdemeanor||+9 Months||$10,000|
|Felony Case||Class H Felony||6 Years||$10,000|
|*Subsequent offense is subject to additional penalties|
You Are Not Guilty Until You Are Convicted™
Bail jumping can arise on many levels and many situations in the state of Wisconsin. Bail jumping becomes a possibility as soon as someone is charged with any crime. The court set will set a monetary amount for bail in the form of a signature bond or a cash bond. The cash bond will require the defendant to pay money in order to remain out of custody. When someone is charged with a crime and they appear before a judge or commissioner at their initial appearance, the court will set a bail amount and conditions of bond, giving the defendant the opportunity to remain out of custody while their case is pending. This opportunity can come at a price. The cash bond will require the defendant to pay money in order to remain out of custody.
If the defendant is able to pay bail, then they must abide by their conditions of bond while out of custody. In all cases, there is a condition of bond requiring there be no other violations of the law—do not commit other crimes. In drunk driving cases, many courts will require absolute sobriety and no driving without a valid license. In cases involving a co-defendant or a victim, many courts will put a no contact order in Wisconsin in place.
What is bail jumping?
Bail jumping is charged when those conditions of bond are violated. For example, if you are charged with an offense involving guns or other weapons, one of your conditions of bond would most likely say you are not to possess any dangerous weapons. If, while out on bond, you are found to be possessing a dangerous weapon, you can be charged with bail jumping.
Is Bail Jumping a Felony or a Misdemeanor?
Whether a bail jumping charge is a misdemeanor or felony is a different consideration, as is where you will be charged. If the bond conditions were set for a felony case, then the bail jumping charges will be a felony. If they were for a misdemeanor, then the bail jumping charge will be a misdemeanor. As to where the bail jumping will be charged, it can either be charged in the county where you are currently facing charges or it can be in the county in which you committed the bail jumping.
What happens if I unintentionally jumped bail?
In order to prove a charge of bail jumping, the State must prove that a person intentionally failed to comply with the terms of the bail. If they cannot prove that whatever action that violated bail was taken intentionally to violate the terms of bail, they cannot prove a charge of bail jumping.
Is there a legal excuse to bail jumping?
A person cannot knowingly and intentionally fail to comply with the terms of their bond. If a person is not aware of those terms, or if they do not intentionally violate those terms, they have not committed the offense of bail jumping. There may be some affirmative defense options to bail jumping as well, depending on the specific facts of the situation.
Can a Defendant leave WI if charged with an OWI Felony?
Generally speaking, bail conditions on felony OWI charges do not prohibit a person from leaving the state of Wisconsin. However, bail conditions do require that the defendant returns to court for all court appearances. Additionally, it is possible that the court may impose a travel restriction on a person charged with a felony OWI. As such, it is important to review the specific bail conditions in your case to determine if you can legally leave WI while on bail for a felony OWI.
Can you receive a bond for a bail jumping charge?
If you are charged with bail jumping, you will face a judge who will set bail and bail conditions that you must meet in order to be released from jail while your case is pending.
What happens if you commit a crime while on bail in WI?
A person who is charged with committing a crime while on bail in WI can face multiple new issues. In addition to new charges for whatever new crime was committed, you could face bail jumping charges. If you were on bail for a misdemeanor offense, you will face misdemeanor bail jumping charges which carry a maximum of 9 months in jail and up to a $10,000 fine. If you were on bail for a felony offense at the time you committed a new offense, you will face felony bail jumping charges. Felony bail jumping is a Class H felony that carries up to 6 years in prison, a $10,000 fine or both.
Do you get drug tested while out on a signature bond in WI?
The conditions of bond that the judge or commissioner set in your case will determine whether you will be required to submit to drug testing while out on a signature bond. If the court sets a condition of bond that you comply with pre-trial monitoring, you will likely be required to submit to random drug testing.
Does an ordinance violation count as a crime for bail jumping?
An ordinance violation is not a crime under WI law. However, if your terms of bond require you to commit "no new law violations", then an ordinance violation may be used as the basis for a bail jumping charge. If your bond requires that you commit "no new crimes" then an ordinance violation would not be the basis for a bail jumping charge.
How many days can you be held on a cash bond before it switches to a signature bond in WI?
You can be held in custody on a case in WI for the maximum number of days you could receive if you are convicted of the offense. If you are unable to post the amount of cash bond set by the court, you will remain in custody until your case is concluded or until you have served the maximum sentence allowed by law.
How severe is felony H bail jumping?
If you were on bail for a felony offense and you are charged with bail jumping, you will be charged with felony bail jumping. It is a Wisconsin felony H penalty that carries a maximum penalty of 6 years in prison and up to a $10,000 fine or both. If you were on bail for a misdemeanor offense, you will face misdemeanor bail jumping which carries a maximum penalty of 9 months in jail and up to a $10,000 fine or both. Misdemeanor bail jumping is a class A misdemeanor (learn about class A misdemeanor Wisconsin penalties).
In WI, if a person gets out on a signature bond and gets arrested, what happens next?
In addition to charges that result from your arrest, you could face additional bail jumping charges if you are arrested while out on a signature bond. Most conditions of bond will require that you commit no new law violations that rise to the level of probable cause. If you are charged with a new arrest following an arrest, you could face bail jumping charges in addition to the charges for which you were newly arrested. The court could also revoke your signature bond and require you to post cash bond in the original case in order to be released from custody.
Being charged with bail jumping or think you might? Contact Grieve Law’s bail jumping defense attorneys today!