Situation: Defendant is arrested. He makes the $10k Bond. When indicted, the District Judge increases the bond amount to $75k and a new warrant is issued at that time. Defendant fails to show up at arraignment.
Question: Can we file a bond forfeiture action on the $10k?
Preliminary Answer: I don't think so because the new bond amount/capias was implemented without the Defendant taking any action to violate conditions of the first bond.
Does anyone have any information supporting or criticizing that preliminary answer?
He entered into a valid contract with the State and his surety. So the question is, does the judge's action of setting a higher bond invalidate that contract or somehow release him from the contract? I would say that contract was still in effect unless he had been picked up on the new warrant before he failed to appear in court as required by the bond he was obligated under.
See, if we go under contract law, we agree not to arrest him and he agrees to pay a bond. If we put out a new arrest warrant for him aren't we breaching the contract? OR, am I reading this incorrectly?
I don't think "We" (the State) did anything. The judge issued a warrant. If a surety wants to relieve himself of responsibility on a bond he can file an affidavit under Art. 17.19 listing all the terrible things his principal has done to distress the surety into believing his client will not appear. If the judge agrees that the terrible things the principal has done should worry the surety the judge issues a warrant. However, that doesn't relieve the surety from liability on the bond unless he is arrested prior to forfeiture. I think the same is true in your scenario.
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