When a person is arrested, they will have to face 1 of 3 scenarios, which are to the judge to choose. The judge can:
• Deny bail – The defendant has no choice but to remain in custody. The judge has determined that this person is too dangerous to be released from jail.
• Grant bail release – The defendant may pay a dollar amount, to be assigned by the judge, in order to be released.
• Grant own recognizance release – The defendant signs paperwork promising to show up for court and is released. No payment is required.
Clearly, being granted own recognizance release is the most ideal scenario, but the judge only grants this to those who otherwise have no criminal activity and are trustworthy enough to show up for court.
If granted bail, the defendant can pay cash bail, 100% of the full bail amount, or they can hire a bail bondsman who acts as a surety. In this case, the defendant pays 10% of the bail amount to the bail agent. In either case, the defendant is required to show up for court as schedule.