Fizer Bonding Company helps dozens of people every week get out of jail quickly and affordably in Montgomery and Robertson counties. They also keep their eyes on what is going on nationwide affecting people as they defend themselves in the legal system. Quick and easy bail release is a critical component to a person being able to build a defense and have good legal representation. Fizer Bonding Company has also noted that a combination of social and economic forces are hampering police investigations and law enforcement activity nationwide. 

Whether you agree or not with your local police department politics, it does matter to most citizens how well their local police department performs its duties protecting citizens, especially in Montgomery and Robertson counties Tennessee. Unfortunately, many departments nationwide are juggling staff to cope with the new normal. “We’re getting more calls for service and there are fewer people to answer them,” said Philadelphia Police spokesperson Eric Gripp, whose department has been rotating employees from specialty units for short assignments to increase patrols. “This isn’t just an issue in Philadelphia. Departments all over are down and recruitment has been difficult.” 

Portland is sending “public support specialists” to respond to some calls because the department doesn’t have enough licensed officers. “For me, I wonder what the profession is going to be 20 years from now if we’re having these challenges on a nationwide scale. Are we going to be able to recruit enough people to serve our cities?” asked Portland Police Chief Chuck Lovell, whose force has lost 237 sworn officers through retirements or resignations since 2020.

Probably not coincidentally, Portland saw a record number of homicides in 2021. The 89 homicides were over three times the city’s normal annual rate, and the city is on pace to break that record again in 2022.

Pretrial Matters

Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, law enforcement agencies had very high turnover rates. Post-lockdown, the social situation is worse. When police officers respond with what they view as an appropriate amount of force, people criticize them. When they stand down and react conservatively, people criticize them. Frequently, it’s the same critics in both situations. Very few people line up for jobs like that. Oh, and police work is also physically dangerous. There’s that as well.

Once upon a time, these problems weren’t as severe. For the most part, the generous retirement plan and other perks that most police departments offer could lure people away from more lucrative private security gigs. But that’s no longer the case, at least in many places.

The effects of high turnover and poor recruitment are first felt during initial traffic stops and during search warrant acquisition. 

As their ranks dwindle, many sheriff’s offices have pulled deputies off their regular duties and sent them on patrol. So, the deputies who once worked with Montgomery County bail bondsmen at the jailhouse are now pulling over motorists for traffic violations. Sometimes these deputies may not be up-to-date on the latest investigative procedure and legal requirements. So, the chances of procedural errors, like the failure to timely Mirandize a suspect, can increase.

Procedural errors are effective defenses. If prosecutors don’t have enough evidence at trial, investigators can always go back and find more. However, if a law officer made a procedural error, no one can turn back the clock and reverse that mistake.

Issues often arise during the search warrant process as well. Former President Trump is currently in high profile for the search of his Mar-A-Lago Estate home in Florida. Officers who have been on the job for many years have relationships in the community. Frequently, these contacts provide information without expecting money, leniency, or anything else in return. New officers often over-rely on paid informants. Judges closely scrutinize the warrants if an attorney challenges probable cause, since many people will say practically anything for love or money. Of course, this is a broad generalization, but things do happen…..

Trials

Experienced law enforcement officers have usually testified in court hundreds or thousands of times. That’s especially true since many big city police officers, and Clarksville counts as the big city, began in smaller law enforcement agencies. At least, these things used to be true.

Today, many Montgomery County law officers, especially those on street patrol, are almost fresh out of the academy. They may have learned some things in school about how to testify in court. But this training doesn’t prepare them to face a tough cross-examination from a veteran criminal defense lawyer. Usually, only time and experience can give a firm footing in the courtroom. 

Frequently, lawyers use seemingly minor discrepancies to completely discredit police officer witnesses. Additionally, many new officers aren’t used to questions like “Why did you destroy your field notes?” Field notes are like scratch paper that officers use to prepare their final reports. Once a police officer or any other witnesses loses his/her credibility, especially with skeptical jurors, it’s almost impossible to regain it.

Trials are almost unheard of in jail cases. The wait, even for a bench trial date, could be several weeks. Almost no Clarksville inmate wants to spend that much time sitting in a jail cell and waiting for his/her day in court. At Fizer Bonding Company, we unlock the possibility of a trial,with affordable and fast bail bonds, by unlocking the cell door and freeing people before their trials. “We’ll get your tail outta jail” 

These evidence problems often create an opportunity for a favorable plea bargain agreement. Frequently, these agreements include a reduced sentence, such as probation as opposed to jail time. Probation isn’t a good option for everyone, but it is a good option for most people. Reduced charges are also common in these matters. For example, prosecutors might drop aggravated assault charges to simple assault.

Post-Conviction Relief

Probation officers and arresting officers often object to expungement, pardon, and other post-conviction relief petitions. If the arresting officer is no longer with the department, the defendant has a better chance of obtaining the requested relief. Peace officer employment turnover is a factor here. 

Expungement, or more commonly sealing, is like burying the criminal conviction on a deserted pirate island. The conviction still exists, but only a select few people know where X marks the spot. These people usually include judges, law enforcement officials, and certain licensing bureaucrats. As far as potential employers, landlords, and other members of the general public are concerned, the conviction does not exist when they go to check a person’s criminal records for a background check.

Typically, the arrest record is still visible to everyone on the side of the public. But almost everyone knows there’s a big difference between an arrest and a conviction. For that reason, most employers and other such people only care about convictions. So, although the Clarksville booking record remains, it’s not a big deal.

Executive pardon isn’t nearly the long shot that some people think it is. Statistically, most governors grant about 10 percent of the pardon applications they receive. That’s not a lot, but it is a statistically significant number. The chances of obtaining a pardon increase if no one, such as the arresting officer, opposed the application. 

These are just a few points of conversations that a defendant will have with their attorney. With high police turnover happening nationwide, getting out on bail with Fizer Bonding Company is more important than ever. If you were booked into a Montgomery County jail, call Fizer Bail Bonds today. We have the lowest 10% bail bond fees and over 35 years of bonding experience in Montgomery and Robertson counties. Our fast, respectful, and courteous bail bond services are available 24/7!  More value added FREE information can be found in our online articles. Fizer Bonding Company is a proud member of the Tennessee Association of Professional Bail Agents and the Robertson County Chamber of Commerce

“We’ll get your tail outta jail!”

Fizer Bonding Company Montgomery County Tennessee

(931) 449-9351

Fizer Bonding Company Robertson County Tennessee

(615) 667-1109

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