If you don’t turn yourself in on a self surrender warrant, does the county actively look for you?

UPDATED: Jul 6, 2009

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If you don’t turn yourself in on a self surrender warrant, does the county actively look for you?

Asked on July 6, 2009 under Criminal Law, California


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 13 years ago | Contributor

I'm not certain as to what you mean by "self surrender warrant".  For all warrants you can always surrender yourself to the authorities.  I'm assuming here that you are talking about a "bench warrant" having been issued. 

Typically, depending on the case and surrounding circumstances, you will not be pursued by the authorities.  There simply isn't enough manpower and money to do so.  However, do not think that this relieves you of your criminal liability.  If you are stopped for something as simple as a traffic violation or even have an employment background check done, this can all turn up.  In fact you can count on it.  Maybe not today or tomorrow but this will come back to haunt you.

Instead of looking over your shoulder for the next how many years, you should voluntarily turn yourself into the court.  It will go a long way in your favor if you do as opposed to being brought in by the police on the jail bus. 

What you need to do now is to consult about all of this with an attorney in your area.  Listen carefully to what they have to say and then follow their advice.

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