If there is a warrant in your name this means that the police can legally take you into custody upon coming into contact with you. Most people who have outstanding warrants (new or old) for their arrest failed to appear for fingerprinting or a court appearance resulting in a bench warrant being issued for their arrest.
- If the warrant is endorsed the police have the authority to release the person again upon arrest.
- If the warrant is unendorsed the police are legally required to hold the accused and bring them before the court.
THERE ARE 4 TYPES OF WARRANTS THAT GIVE THE POLICE THE POWER TO ARREST A PERSON:
- arrest warrant
- bench warrant
- witness warrant
- surety warrant
An arrest warrant gives police the power to arrest the person named in the warrant so that person can be brought to court.
The arrest warrant will include:
- your name
- the offence you’re accused of
- an order to arrest you
- the signature or name of the judge or justice of the peace who ordered the warrant
A police officer can swear an information if they have reasonable and probable grounds to believe you have committed a crime. An information is an official court document charging you with an offence. A judge or justice of the peace decides whether to issue an arrest warrant based on the information.
Having reasonable and probable grounds is more than having a suspicion or hunch based on the facts. The officer must believe that any reasonable person in the officer’s position would think there are grounds to believe you were involved in a crime.
The judge or justice of the peace decides whether to issue an arrest warrant or an appearance notice after reviewing the information.
A bench warrant is issued by a judge or justice of the peace for the arrest of a person who did not go to court for an appearance, hearing, or trial.
A witness warrant is issued for the arrest of a person who failed to appear as a witness under subpoena. If you were given a subpoena and didn’t go to court when the subpoena told you to, the court may issue a witness warrant against you.
If the person who promised to supervise you during your release doesn’t want to be your surety any more, that person can go to court and apply to be removed as your surety. The application must be in writing.
If you don’t go to court and turn yourself in when the person who doesn’t want to be your surety anymore attends court, a surety warrant will be issued for your arrest.
WHO CAN ARREST YOU
If there is a Canada-wide arrest warrant against you, any police officer in the country can arrest you.
If a bench warrant has been issued for your arrest, any police officer in Ontario can arrest you and take you back to where the warrant was issued. But they may not do that. It depends on how far they would have to travel and how serious the charges against you are.
Source: https://stepstojustice.ca/steps/criminal-law/1-learn-about-types-warrants/ Reviewed: December 31, 2016
WHAT DO I DO IF THERE’S AN ARREST WARRANT FOR ME?
- Learn about the types of warrants
- Talk to a lawyer
- Prepare to turn yourself in
- Turn yourself in
If there’s a warrant for your arrest, it’s better to turn yourself in than to wait for the police to pick you up. The courts will think you’re a more responsible person if you turn yourself in. This may improve your chances of being allowed to go back into the community if you have a bail hearing.
Talk to a lawyer
Before you turn yourself in, talk to a lawyer.
Your lawyer can contact the police and help you arrange to turn yourself in. Your lawyer can also help you make a plan of release.
Prepare to turn yourself in
Before you turn yourself in, write down phone numbers for family and friends who might be willing to be a surety for you. When you go to the police station, do not bring personal property or your car with you. This will make it simpler if you’re not released.
What the police are allowed to do
The police are allowed take you into custody when there’s a warrant for your arrest. But after taking you into custody, within 24 hours the police must:
- let you leave, or
- bring you before a judge or a justice of the peace, and not cause an unreasonable delay in giving you a bail hearing
Source: https://stepstojustice.ca/questions/criminal-law/what-do-i-do-if-theres-arrest-warrant-me/ Reviewed: December 31, 2016