Previously we discussed what happens when your charges are dropped, who can drop your charges, and whether or not criminal charges still appear on your criminal record after they are dropped. Similar to dropped charges are dismissed charges and acquittal, and the three distinct outcomes are often confused with each other. As your Elkhart bail bondsman, we are dedicated to helping you better understand your charges and each outcome so you feel as prepared as possible for what’s ahead.

Understanding Dismissal

While the power to drop charges lies with the prosecution, the power to dismiss a case entirely lies only with the judge. Dismissal happens when the prosecution presents the judge with the criminal case and what they believe to be enough evidence to convict the defendant. If the judge determines after the review that the evidence is unsubstantial, then he will dismiss the case.

Understanding Acquittal

Acquittal happens after the case has gone to trial. If the prosecution does not present enough evidence in order to prove the defendant’s guilt, then the jury or judge will rule that the defendant is “not guilty,” and the case is acquitted.

Effect on Your Personal Record

Both dismissal and acquittal will appear on your criminal record, but either is preferable to a conviction. If you wish to remove the charges completely from your permanent record then you must talk to an attorney about an expungement, which will wipe the charge completely from your record.

Paying Your Bail Bondsman

It is important to remember that you are paying your bail bondsman to get you out of jail, and their service is performed when your bail is posted and you go home. This means that regardless of the outcome of your case, whether you are acquitted, the case is dismissed, or you receive an expungement, you still benefited from the bail bondsman’s services and they must be paid.

At A-1 Bail Bonds, we understand that this can be a very stressful time for you and your loved ones. Because of this, we do our best to make the process simple, affordable, and straightforward so that you have your best chance for a great future. Contact us today to learn more!