You would be hard-pressed to find many people who want to serve time in jail. Jail time is a punishment because the loss of one’s freedom is a difficult and disturbing prospect. In the state of California, certain defendants may be eligible for house arrest instead of jail time.
In this article, we will share valuable information about house arrest and who may be eligible in the state of California. If you are facing criminal charges, it is critical that you secure the assistance of a criminal defense attorney who understands the charges against you and can help you weigh your legal options.
What is house arrest?
Overcrowded prisons resulted in the need for California to come up with options other than jail time for some individuals who have been convicted of crimes. Alternative sentences can include a variety of options, most popularly community service or supervised electronic confinement, also known as house arrest.
A sentence of house arrest means that an offender must wear a tracking device while they serve their sentence outside of jail. In most cases, the offender will work, attend classes or participate in court-ordered programs while under house arrest.
Who qualifies for house arrest?
Not every offender will have the option of house arrest. In most cases, there are certain criteria that must be met in order for an offender to be eligible for house arrest. Some of these criteria include:
- The crime is nonviolent
- The offender is considered low risk
- There are no previous restrictions to house arrest
- You have a working phone
- You live in or near the county in which you are sentenced
- You have the ability to pay fees associated with house arrest
There are both pros and cons of house arrest. Many offenders who qualify for house arrest in California are attracted to the idea of staying home and sleeping in their own beds. Offenders can still work, attend classes and participate in rehabilitative programs. In addition, offenders can still have contact with friends and family.
On the other hand, house arrest has some important drawbacks that must be considered. For one, there are monetary charges associated with house arrest. Offenders must be aware of this and have the ability to pay in order to continue taking advantage of that alternate sentencing option. There are significant limitations to your freedom and mobility while under house arrest. For example, you may be required to stay home during certain hours of the day. Some monitoring devices require significant time to charge and therefore you are unable to leave your home during that time.
Offenders on house arrest must wear a monitoring device at all times. They will be required to report to a probation officer and are not eligible to have their sentence reduced. Finally, offenders who violate any conditions stipulated under their house arrest sentence may be arrested and sent to jail.
Do you need a criminal defense attorney for a non-violent crime?
Many individuals who have been accused of non-violent criminal offenses wonder if they need to spend the time and expense of hiring a criminal defense attorney. In the state of California, you should have an attorney on your side to help you navigate your charges no matter how serious the charges. With the right attorney on your side, you may be able to secure a sentence of house arrest rather than jail time.
Oceanside Criminal Defense Attorney
Have you been arrested for a criminal offense? Are you facing possible jail time? If you have been arrested in California, you need an experienced and competent criminal defense attorney to help you navigate the legal system. While you may not be eligible for house arrest in California, the Law Office of Joni Eisenstein can help you understand your options.
Contact the Law Office of Joni Eisenstein at 760-721-3161 today for your free initial consultation. Joni Eisenstein proudly serves clients in Oceanside, Vista, Escondido, San Diego and the surrounding cities.