If my boyfriend received a phone call from a court office about missing court for a charge he was never served paperwork for, will he go to jail?

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If my boyfriend received a phone call from a court office about missing court for a charge he was never served paperwork for, will he go to jail?

The court office called him and stated that they couldn’t disclose any information about the case other than the fact that he missed 2 court dates. They also stated that he was sent certified letter about these hearing which he in fact never received. He was also contacted by a detective stating he had a felony warrant out for his arrest for missing said hearings. He was also told his next court hearing was the 1th. He had never been served paperwork for any of these court hearings and is currently unaware of why he is supposed to go to court. He does not reside in the state.

Asked on June 10, 2012 under Criminal Law, South Dakota

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

I would strongly suggest that you seek help from an attorney in the area where the warrant was issued who can intervene on his behalf.  If he gets pulled over for a traffic ticket they could arrest him.  If it is a felony warrant they may activiely look for him (if he got a call they know where he is).  The attorney can arrange for him to turn himself in voluntarily and thereby smooth the waters.  He has a better chance then by showing the court he came in in good faith.  But DO NOT GO WITHOUT A LAWYER.  Good luck.

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Potentially your boyfriend who claims that he was never served paperwork with respect to a criminal matter proceeding against him could go to jail based upon being served with an outstanding bench warrant.

It all boils down to who the judge hearing the case believes if he is arrested on an outstanding bench warrant.

Given the fact that your boyfriend does not reside in the state where the criminal matter against him is supposedly venued, I suggest that he retain a criminal defense attorney who practices law in the county and state where the criminal matter against him is supposedly located to assist.


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