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Juvenile Arrests - Bail Bonds Houston

Posted by on in Houston Bail Bond Information!
Juvenile arrest and bail bonds in Houston.

I updated my website and part of that process included reposting old blogs. This blog was posted a couple of years ago.

I have not had this same experience since I originally posted this and I’m guessing the courts may be handling these cases differently now. If any readers are aware of how these juvenile cases are being handled please feel free to reply.

I've been making bail bonds in Houston for over 30 years and today was the first time that a 15 year old girl had to sign and thumb print a bail bond.

My guess is that a lot more goes on and there's a lot more history than I will ever know about concerning juvenile arrests, juvenile court, and juvenile detention because typically bail is not a consideration in juvenile matters.

The news reports the most prolific cases and again my guess is we hear about less than a fraction of what goes on day to day in our schools and neighborhoods concerning juvenile offenders.

I’m sure this case wasn’t unusual, but because I was contacted it made an impression on me.

The 15 year old girl’s mother called our office, her voice was cracking; she wanted to know what it would cost to post a bail bond for her and her child. Her 15 year old daughter had been charged with the (crime) of skipping class at school. The result then was that she herself had also been charged with the crime of a parent contributing to her daughters' non-attendance.

As I have stated, I’m positive a lot more goes on than I am aware of but I have to say it really did give me a chill to think that this is what it has come to, (if a child skips school it is a crime).

And, in rethinking some of this I have to assume that there are way too many parents out there that simply do not have the ability to control their children’s behavior. The parents that simply do not care should be charged criminally and so I assume that is where these laws come from and in all likelihood probably do need to be in place.

I assume it would have all worked out to be ok for this mother and her daughter if she hadn't gotten the court date mixed up, but she did and now a warrant had been issued for their arrest.

I asked the mother as I always do with anyone that calls concerning a bail bond, what had allegedly occurred for her and her daughter to be charged with their crimes?

The mothers' voice was still cracking and it was easy to tell she was trying desperately to hold back the tears and she finally got it all out. She explained that her daughter had been getting bullied at school and had purposely chosen to hide in the bathroom during a particular class. She was afraid, and didn't really know what to do and so as a last resort she simply hid.

The mother had no knowledge of her hiding but had known about the bullying and had discussed the matter with the school previously. She confronted her daughter and the daughter fessed up, she was scared and apparently nothing had been done to look into the bullying, or at least nothing had been done to stop it.

The mother had explained to the Principal of the school what had been happening again after being told that her daughter had been skipping school. This was enough to now get the attention of the school and arrangements were finally made to change her daughters' schedule and that worked; her daughter can now go to class without being threatened by others.

The mother was told that no action would be taken and she was shocked when she received notice that she and her child would be required to appear before a judge and that they were both being charged with a crime.

I realize that in cities the size of Houston and in school districts that are so enormous that the possibility of error exists when it comes to reporting truancy issues that have been satisfactorily resolved by the school.

And, I realize that once something has been reported, or in this case a formal complaint was filed it is the responsibility of the court to intervene and address the allegation. But for some reason it seems like if according to the school the matter had been resolved then resolving the court action would be easily enough resolved as well through some means. I’m not a lawyer and I’ve never been involved with juvenile cases so my guess is that there is not. So anyway, it was apparent that legal action had been taken.

As I explained bail bonds typically do not involve teenage children under the age of 17 and this was my first experience with dealing with a juvenile matter.

I was uncertain as to whether or not a bail bond would be required by the child since we had never posted a bail bond involving a juvenile before and I thought that perhaps because of the circumstances the court may have been able to make arrangements with the mother and child without the need of a bail bond at all, so I contacted the court.

I was told no, that the child and the mother would be required to post a bail bond, pay the fine or go to jail.

I explained the circumstances again in more detail to the person at the court in hopes that perhaps the mother could simply speak with the judge or another person at the court by showing up personally and possibly receive a new court date without requiring a bail bond. I explained that she was a single parent who had recently been laid off from her job and she truly didn't have the extra money lying around. And, apparently the truancy issue had been resolved according to the school; the girl was no longer being bullied and no longer afraid to attend class.

The answer was still no.

I contacted the mother and told her that I would make arrangements for her in any way that she needed financially in order for her to not be burdened by this unfortunate set of circumstances and we were able to make the bonds for her and her (child).

After speaking with the mother and the child in my office I was completely baffled by what I had heard next.

Apparently no action of any kind was ever taken to address the bully. It makes sense that truancy is a valid concern, but I would think that violence would be at the top of the list of concerns.

It seemed to me the proper action for them would have been to go to a teacher and to the Principal's office to get help so that the hallways could receive more monitoring between classes and that is when I was told that the bullying was taking place openly in class.

When I asked what action was taken by the teacher I was told that the classrooms are typically noisy and that the students were rarely in a controlled classroom environment, that cell phones were in use and displayed openly by practically all students that had them and that this was the normal day to day experience.

The mother said that she had purposely gone to her daughters' school and witnessed this behavior first hand and that it appeared as if the school had no control over the students in any situation whether it be in the classroom or in the hallway or on the school grounds. Consequently, being bullied anywhere at any time in any setting was always possible and quite the norm.

I have heard this same story before from young employees in the past that were struggling with GED tests. I would ask what it was that made them make the decision to drop out of school and the response was that they did not drop out they simply failed and that the classroom was such that only a few were getting passing grades because they were receiving tutoring from outside sources.

The curriculum for the class was simply not being taught and that if a passing grade were given the students then they for the most part were being passed by the teacher simply by choosing to pass whom they wished to pass regardless of the students actual ability to pass a test.

When I heard this sort of thing I honestly felt that the fault was probably that of the student and they were using the teacher as a scapegoat.

I remember thinking that this was just too outrageous to be believable but when talking with that mother and daughter the feeling that what these previous employees were telling me was the truth all along kept nagging at me.

The reason for this post has more to do with consequences than with 15 year old girls being charged with truancy.

I don’t have personal knowledge that this type of activity is going on but I do believe that it is in various ways under various conditions based on the research of others which I began looking into after this particular case crossed my path.

I don’t believe this same type of activity exists in all schools.

I don’t believe that the teachers or the schools districts in schools where this type of activity is taking place are to blame either. I think the school districts, the teachers and the students have been disenfranchised by the system.

What I do know is that the United States incarcerates more people than anyplace on the planet and if this type of activity is what can be found in any school anywhere then it would be a pretty good guess that all we really have is an incubator designed to produce a lot of future criminals. The percentages would indicate that a larger percentage of these students make it through the public school system but the percentages of those who do not are staggering.

Studies show the percentages and the different degrees of criminal activity that take place in schools. Comparisons are made to show the disparity between and likelihood of these problems being more prevalent in poorer neighborhoods than in wealthier neighborhoods.

Different ways of providing education have been documented that have been shown statistically to help and one could certainly make the argument that they offer a much better chance of receiving an education for those fortunate enough to be included in these programs.

However, what seems to be obvious does not seem to be the answers that are found by those in government that have the ability to actually do something. I’m not a part of the educational system and I’m not a politician so I truly have no real understanding of what is being done about this obvious problem within our educational system outside of studies and those few educational choices that are made available to the few that have the opportunity to take advantage of them.

Would it not make more sense to spend the lion’s share of resources where the problems begin, (education), instead of where they end up, (prison)?

What good does it do to enforce truancy laws if the student is being kept in an incubator of criminal behavior?

I’m certain these arguments are made all the time by those who are deeply involved; I’m just at a total loss as to why we haven’t come further along.
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