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What to Do if You’re Being Stalked

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Every single year, approximately 7.5 million Americans become the victims of a stalker. If you suspect that you’ve attracted the attention of a stalker you must remain calm while simultaneously taking steps to protect yourself.

Don’t Dismiss the Threat

One of the biggest mistakes many stalking victims make is deciding that they are imagining things or that the situation isn’t all that serious. When it comes to a stalker, it’s best to be over-cautious. Being the victim of a stalker not only puts your mental health at risk, but it can also be life-threatening. The University of Gloucestershire conducted a six-month study that revealed that stalking was a component in 94% of the studied homicides.

As soon as you even suspect you’ve attracted the attention of a stalker, you need to take steps to protect yourself.

Block Your Social Media Accounts

Social media has made stalking easier than ever before. Routing posts provide an incredible amount of information that a stalker will use against you. When you feel that you’ve attracted the attention of a stalker, set all of your online profiles to private and stop posting updates, particularly updates that a stalker could use to figure out where you’re going and your routine.

Alert Loved Ones to the Situation

Even if you only have a funny feeling about someone, you should talk to your loved ones about the situation. Not only will they help you decide if you’re imagining things, but they can also take steps to make sure you’re protected. A perfect example of how alerting a loved one to the situation will help you out is that they’ll be willing to accompany you on errands. Not only is there safety in numbers, but the second pair of eyes means you will have a witness to the stalking which will strengthen your case if you have to press charges.

Start Keeping a Record

Pull out a notebook and start recording everything that relates to your stalker. This record should include gifts you’ve received, any time they’ve been in the same location as you, and all virtual and in-person conversations you’ve had with them. It’s a good idea to keep copies of these records in different locations. The data you collect will be a key piece of evidence against your stalker.

Get Serious About Personal Protection

You can’t afford to get casual with your personal protection. As soon as you feel that you’re becoming the victim of a stalker, you need to take a long look at your current situation and evaluate how you can make it safer. You need to lock your doors. You need to alert loved ones about where you’re going and when you’ll be back. Consider taking a self-defense class. Get into the habit of frequently checking in with loved ones. You may even want to consider staying with a friend or loved one until you can figure out how to resolve the situation.

Talk to the Police

As soon as you start to feel threatened by the stalker, it’s time to contact the police. The amount of protection they can provide will depend on your exact circumstances. Even if the situation hasn’t escalated to the point of you being able to obtain a restraining order or file charges against your stalker, contacting the authorities is always a good idea since it officially shows that you’re concerned about the situation and creates yet another record that strengthens your case. The police will also likely have some advice about additional steps you can take to protect yourself.

The most important thing to remember when you’ve attracted the attention of a stalker is to cut your ties with them and to trust your instincts.


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Boating While Under the Influence in California

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Everyone knows about the dangers and legal consequences of driving while under the influence, but we have a tendency to get lax when it comes to other situations. For example, while most of us would never dream of getting behind the wheel of our car after we’ve had a few beers, we have no hesitation when it comes to steering a boat as we drink.

One of the reasons we don’t give boating under the influence a second thought is because very little is ever said about the legal repercussions of doing so. The truth is, that if you’re caught driving a boat while intoxicated, your immediate future could be ruined.

The issue of boating under the influence in California is dealt discussed in Harbors & Navigation Code 655. The law states that:

(b) No person shall operate any vessel or manipulate water skis, an aquaplane, or a similar device while under the influence of an alcoholic beverage, any drug, or the combined influence of an alcoholic beverage and any drug.

(c) No person shall operate any recreational vessel or manipulate any water skis, aquaplane, or similar device if the person has an alcohol concentration of 0.08 percent or more in his or her blood.

(d) No person shall operate any vessel other than a recreational vessel if the person has an alcohol concentration of 0.04 percent or more in his or her blood.

(e) No person shall operate any vessel, or manipulate water skis, an aquaplane, or a similar device who is addicted to the use of any drug. This subdivision does not apply to a person who is participating in a narcotic treatment program approved pursuant to Article 3 (commencing with Section 11875) of Chapter 1 of Part 3 of Division 10.5 of the Health and Safety Code.

(f) No person shall operate any vessel or manipulate water skis, an aquaplane, or a similar device while under the influence of an alcoholic beverage, any drug, or under the combined influence of an alcoholic beverage and any drug, and while so operating, do any act forbidden by law, or neglect any duty imposed by law in the use of the vessel, water skis, aquaplane, or similar device, which act or neglect proximately causes bodily injury to any person other than himself or herself.

Getting caught boating under the influence isn’t a joke. You will be charged and face legal consequences. The exact consequences will depend on if it’s your first offense and exactly which aspect of Harbors & Navigation Code 655 was violated.

In most situations, boating under the influence in California is a misdemeanor offense. The maximum sentence for a first-time offense is six months to one year in jail and/or a potential fine of up to $1,000. It’s also possible that the judge will include substance abuse counseling and community service into the sentence.

In the right circumstances, a boating under the influence charge can become a felony offense. This usually happens if your actions resulted in someone getting hurt or if you caused a boating accident that created substantial property damage. If convicted of felony boating under the influence in California, your sentence could include 16 months to three years in jail.

The best way to make sure you don’t have to deal with the hassle of a boating under the influence charge in California is making sure that a designated captain who agrees to not to drink is the only person who piolet the boat.

Your boating adventures should be handled the same way you handle nights out with friends.


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Distracted Walking in California

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Everyone is familiar with distracted driving, but few of us have ever heard of distracted walking laws. If you’re wondering if that’s even a real thing you’re not alone.

Rest assured, not only is distracted walking a viable concern, but one California city, Montclair, has already passed a distracted walking law. In April 2018, the city’s distracted walking law officially went into effect. Once that happened, anyone caught using their cell phone while walking across the street was subjected to a $100.

It seems like a silly rule, but if you take a few minutes watching people walking on the sidewalk and you can see why distracted walking is a concern. These days, people are completely glued to their phones and often unaware of what is happening around them. Some don’t even look up when they start crossing the street. This type of behavior has prompted more cities to explore the concept of distracted walking laws.

A team of researchers at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School, Newark revealed that the number of medical emergencies that included head and neck injuries has substantially increased in the past 20 years.

Legally, drivers are supposed to be aware of pedestrians and do everything in their power to avoid hitting them with their vehicle. The problem that arises is how are drivers supposed to predict when a pedestrian who is texting will suddenly step into the path of oncoming traffic. What makes the issue even more challenging is that many of these pedestrians don’t even realize that they are now in the middle of the road and don’t behave rationally.

Do you think more cities should have distracted walking laws? If distracted laws became common and patrol cops started issuing tickets and fines, would you be more inclined to leave your phone in your pocket, or would you continue to talk and text?


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California Laws Ride Share Drivers Need to Understand

California-ride-share-laws

Rideshare programs like Uber and Lyft are a great way for some people to supplement their income. The programs are designed so that you get to choose your hours. In some cities, people have found that they were able to live a respectful living as a rideshare driver.

The problem some people encounter is that they aren’t properly prepared for the reality of becoming part of a rideshare program. There are some legal issues you should review before you pick up your first customer.

As rideshare programs gained popularity, California lawmakers realized that they needed to step in and start regulating the practice. This led to the creation of several state laws. It’s important to understand that these state laws pertain to anyone who is part of a rideshare program, it doesn’t matter if you’re a full-time driver or if you’re picking up your first passenger.

California state laws rideshare drivers must familiarize themselves with include:

  • A sticker that identifies you as a rideshare driver has to be prominently displayed on your vehicle. One sticker on the windshield, one on the rear window.
  • You must consent to an annual background check
  • The vehicle you use for rideshares must be inspected every 12 months or every 50,000 miles
  • You must pick up and transport customers who have service dogs
  • Vehicles used for rideshares must adhere to California’s current climate emission levels

Rideshare drivers are impacted by Assembly Bill NO. 5 which went into law on January 1, 2020. The law officially changed your status from that of a freelance contractor who simply provided work for Uber or Lyft to that of an employee.

Issues concerning Assembly Bill NO. 5 resulted in a case appearing in the California Superior Court where a judge ruled that both Uber and Lyft were legally responsible for paying drivers a mandated benefit, over time, business-expenses, and minimum wage.

Personal safety and liability issues have been raised by both drivers and passengers. At this point, there aren’t any laws that require rideshare drivers to install a dashboard camera in their vehicle, which would prevent false claims from being filed against drivers, but it is still a good idea.

The most important thing to remember is that you will have to claim any money you make as a rideshare driver and pay taxes on it. Get into the habit of keeping detailed rideshare financial records so that if you’re ever audited, you won’t have to worry about getting a bill for back taxes and unclaimed income from the IRS.


bad behavior on flights

Planning a Flight? Make Sure You’re on Your Best Behavior!

bad behavior on flights

Most of us have been on a flight where at least one passenger seemed to go out of their way to be difficult. They were loud, overly active, got sassy with the flight attendants, etc. In some cases, the passenger’s bad behavior was amusing. In other situations, it was irritating. Sometimes it even becomes concerning.

The airlines have decided that enough is enough and they are no longer going to tolerate unruly passengers on flights.

Federal safety officials recently announced that they are no longer tolerating bad behavior on flights. The decision was made after multiple airline workers reported that they’d had confrontations with individuals and groups who were flying into Washington D.C. with the intention of joining the protests/riots that shook the U.S. Capitol.

According to the Federal Aviation Administration, flights throughout the country experienced, “a disturbing increase in incidents where airline passengers have disrupted flights with threatening or violent behavior. These incidents have stemmed both from passengers’ refusals to wear masks and from recent violence at the U.S. Capitol.”

This is not the first time this issue has come up. Bad behavior on flights has been an ongoing concern since passenger flights first became popular. In 2001, the issue was finally addressed following the 9/11 attacks. Since then, the FAA has continuously explored different methods for identifying and quelling disruptive issues that occur both while in the air and in the actual airport.

Just a few examples of this include a couple who were arrested after they got into an altercation about a bag dispute in the Detroit Metro Airport. Another famous incident involved Alec Baldwin who refused to power off his electronics, despite being asked to do so by a flight attendant.

Stephen Dickson who serves as the administrator for the FAA listened to recent complaints about unruly behavior on flights and signed what is basically a zero-tolerance policy. It’s a one-strike and you’re out policy. If you are accused of being unruly and disturbing the peace while you’re on an airplane, you’ll face serious legal consequences. These extend well beyond being asked to get off the plane.

If you behave badly while in flight, it’s likely you’ll be arrested right after the plane lands. You could be charged up to $35,000 in fines and even serve jail time.

At this point, the FAA considers assaulting or threatening your fellow passengers or the staff who is serving on the plane a disruption of peace. At this point, the order is in effect through March 30. It’s unclear if the FAA will move to extend the order following that date.

If you intend on flying in the next few months, it’s in your best interest to be quiet and on your best behavior until your reach your destination.


consequences of family fighting

What Should I Do if My Family Fights?

consequences of family fighting

Families fight. Some just happen to fight more than others. The trick to weathering family fights is recognizing the signs that the fight is starting to escalate into something that won’t simply blow over and taking steps to diffuse the situation.

Remove Yourself From the Situation

When a fight is starting to get too loud or you sense comments are about to be made that can’t be taken back, removing yourself from the situation is one of the best things you can do. Go for a walk, take a drive, disappear into your bedroom. Take at least a half-hour which gives everyone a chance to cool down. If you’re in a situation where you can’t walk away, you need to do the next best thing which is taking a deep breath, counting backward from ten, and work to mentally calm yourself down. Even this short mini-break gives you a chance to clear your head and reassess the situation. Don’t assume the family member you’re arguing with will be the person who backs down. When it comes to diffusing family fights, you need to be proactive.

Remove Your Emotions from the Drama

You can’t hope to diffuse a family fight if you let your emotions get the best of you. The better you are at staying cool, calm, and collected during the fight, the sooner the situation will resolve itself. Don’t get caught up in the heat of the moment. Count to three before you respond to each comment. Consider two or three different responses and choose the one that is least likely to infuriate the family member you’re arguing with. Removing your emotions during a family fight accomplishes two things. One, it prevents the fight from escalating. It also lays the groundwork for an honest discussion that clears the air and generates results.

Look for a Compromise

Most family fights break out because one person is irritated by something another did. It could be something simple, like leaving dirty socks on the floor, or something major, like failing to pay the electric bill. The best way to diffuse a family fight that revolves around an irritating habit is by looking for a compromise. Once you learn the true issue behind the fight, take a deep breath, acknowledge the issue, and look for a solution that makes both you and the family member you’re arguing with happy. Make sure you honor the agreement. Once everything has calmed down and you’re by yourself, take some time and review the fight as well as what led up to it. Doing this helps you identify the early warning signs of a family fight and will help you nip the problem in the bud the next time you’re in a similar situation.

When the Situation Got Out of Control

It’s the phone call you never want to get: a friend or family member has been arrested and taken to jail. While this can be an emotional time, it’s crucial to stay clear-headed while you figure out your first steps. Of course, your priority is getting the individual released from jail as quickly as possible; however, several things must take place before that can happen. It is extremely important for everyone to remain calm collected during these moments.

Stay Calm and Don’t Divulge Information

First, remind both yourself and the arrested individual to stay calm. It’s important to think clearly as you proceed with next steps. If your loved one is speaking to you by phone, remind them not to say anything incriminating. The phone call is most likely being monitored and/or recorded and can be used against them later. They have the right to remain silent, and they should not divulge any unnecessary information before speaking with a lawyer. You can find out where the person is being held and what the charges are, but don’t ask for details.

Contact Us Immediately

If someone you love has been arrested and you need help now, contact us to determine how to proceed. We’ll work with you to ensure your loved one is released as quickly and painlessly as possible. Family helps family, and that is what you get when you come to us for help. We are a family-owned company and we understand the importance of family. Our bail agents will treat you like one of the family, and provide you with the best bail help available in the state of California. We will work quickly, and do our very best to make the bail bond affordable for you. After all, we want to help you and your family get through this stressful time as quickly and easily as possible.


Should you contact your lawyer first

Should You Contact Your Lawyer or Lynwood Bail Bonds First?

Should you contact your lawyer first

When you’re arrested the first two things you need to do is get bailed out of jail and connect with your lawyer so you can start planning your defense. The big question is who you should contact first: your lawyer or Lynwood Bail Bonds.

It depends on if your bail is preset or if you have to attend a bail hearing. If you’re charges are severe enough, you’ll have to go to a bail hearing where a judge will decide how much bail is required and what conditions will be connected to the bail. If you are required to attend a bail hearing, your lawyer should be the first person you contact.

If you’re told how much bail is required as soon as you’re booked, Lynwood Bail Bonds should be your first call. Thanks to our 24/7 availability, we’ll be able to help you out even during the middle of the night when your lawyer isn’t answering their phone.

As soon as we’ve worked out a payment plan and you’ve signed a contract, we go to work and get you sprung from jail. If there is a delay, it is only because we’re waiting for your paperwork to be processed.

Once we’ve posted your bail bond, you’re free to go home. This allows you to get a good night’s sleep, eat a decent meal, and discuss the situation with your family before calling your lawyer.

The fact that you’re relaxed and able to think clearly allows you to tell your lawyer what happened and to also listen to their advice before considering all of your options. Had you stayed in jail instead of contacting us about bail, you likely would have been so stressed that you would have jumped at the first offer the DA made.

Every single person who works at Lynwood Bail Bonds understands that you’re going through a difficult time. We want to help, which is why we’ve created a selection of great services that takes the stress out of obtaining a bail bond.

When you contact us, you’ll enjoy:

  • 24/7 Bail bond service
  • No hidden fees
  • 20% Discount
  • No collateral for working signers
  • Online payments
  • Phone approvals
  • 0% Interest payment plans
  • Free consultations with a bail bonds expert

The sooner you contact us, the sooner you can go home. All you have to do is call (323)357-0575 or click the Chat With Us link. Trust us, you’ll be glad you did!


bad behavior on flights

Should You Worry About Getting Bailed Out of Jail or Simply Stay Put Until Your Case Closes?

Should you worry about getting bailed out

Getting arrested is something that really makes you stop and think. So many things are going to run through your mind. You’ll find yourself wondering what you should have done differently to avoid your current situation. You’ll worry about your future and how the arrest will impact your career. You’ll stress about how your family will react. You’ll weigh the pros and cons of getting a public defender or paying for a costly defense attorney.

One of the first things you’ll have to consider is if you should apply for a bail bond or if you should stay in a jail cell until your case closes.

Why Getting a Bail Bond is the Smart Move

Being in jail can with your state of mind. The longer you sit in your cell, the more tempting whatever offer the prosecutor throws your way will seem. It usually doesn’t take long before you feel compelled to plead guilty, even when you’re innocent, simply to make the ordeal stop.

Taking advantage of a bail bond and being at home decreases the odds of you taking a deal that isn’t good for you or your loved ones.

Your ability to do things, like meet with your lawyer, is severely limited while you’re sitting in a jail cell. Getting out on bail not only makes scheduling appointments easier but also means you don’t have to worry about who might be listening in while you discuss your case.

The California legal system works at an excruciatingly slow pace. Resolving your case could take months. You can’t expect your employer to keep your job available for that length of time. Getting released on bail allows you to continue working so that you can pay all of your bills on time.

How to Get a Bail Bond

The best way to learn more about bail bonds and how to obtain one, either for yourself or a recently arrested loved one, is by contacting Lynwood Bail Bonds. You can either call or connect with us via online chat. When you do, you’ll speak with an experienced bail bonds expert who will walk you through the process, answer all of your questions, and start the process of getting you released from jail.

The perks of working with Lynwood Bail Bonds include:

  • 24/7 Bail bond service
  • 0% Interest payment plans
  • 20% Discount
  • No hidden fees
  • Online payments
  • Phone approvals
  • No collateral for working signers
  • Free consultations

We do everything in our power to make the experience stress free.

The sooner you contact us, the sooner we can arrange for you to be out of jail and with your family. Feel free to call us at (323)357-0575 or click the Chat With Us link.


Speeding laws

Speeding in California

Speeding laws

Sometimes the urge to have fun overrides our common sense. All of us know how to drive defensively and know that failing to do so could lead to an accident. Yet, when it comes to a wide-open expanse of highway, the urge to do something reckless can be overwhelming. This urge can lead to making some illegal driving moves.

While getting reckless on the open highway feels good, it can also have some painful consequences.

If you’re caught driving well over the speed limit both your driving record and your checkbook will take a hit.

The consequences of speeding down the open highway vary. How much you were speeding directly impacts how much you’re fined.

  • If you’re only 15 miles (or less) over the speed limit, you’re looking at a $35 ticket
  • If you’re going 16 to 25 miles per hour over the posted speed limit, the ticket jumps to $70
  • If you’re stopped while going 26 miles per hour over the speed limit (but still less than 100 mph) you’re looking at a $100 ticket

In California, the maximum fines for speeding tickets are as follows:

  • $238 for driving at a speed of up to 15 mph over the maximum speed limit
  • $367 for driving 16 – 25 mph over the maximum speed limit
  • $490 for driving more than 26 mph over the speed limit
  • $900 for driving faster than 100 mph

If you are in a construction zone, maximum speeding fines increase to:

  • $367 for driving at a speed of up to 15 mph over the maximum speed limit
  • $525 for driving 16 – 25 mph over the maximum speed limit
  • $648 for driving more than 26 mph over the speed limit

These fines might seem painful, but they’re nothing compared to what you’ll face if you’re driving over 100 miles per hour. When the speedometer passes 100, the consequences get more severe, especially if it isn’t the first time you’ve been caught going that fast.

  • First Offense- $500 fine and a 30-day license suspension
  • Second Offense in a three year period-$750 fine and a six-month license suspension
  • Third Offense in five years- $1000 fine and a one-year license suspension

These fines might seem painful, but they’re nothing compared to what you’ll face if you’re driving over 100 miles per hour. When the speedometer passes 100, the consequences get more severe, especially if it isn’t the first time you’ve been caught going that fast.

  • First Offense-$500 fine and a 30-day license suspension
  • Second Offense in a three-year period-$750 fine and a six-month license suspension
  • Third Offense in five years- $1000 fine and a one-year license suspension

The speeding ticket may only be part of your worries. In many cases, excessive speeds also create just the right circumstances for the officer to also charge you with reckless driving. The first time you’re convicted of reckless driving, you could spend 5-90 days in a county jail and be charged a fine that ranges from $145 to $1,000.

In addition to the fines connected to your speeding tickets, likely, you’ll also experience a notable increase in your monthly insurance premiums.

As tempting as speeding down that stretch of open, California highway might be, it’s important to remember that you can’t predict where a patrol officer might be hiding. In the long run, it’s better to ease off the gas and obey all posted speed limits.


drunk driving in california

What happens to the passengers of a suspected DUI driver?

drunk driving in california

The law is clear. If your blood alcohol level is 0.08% or higher and you’re pulled over, you’ll be charged with a DUI. What isn’t clear is what happens if you’re the drunk passenger in a vehicle that’s being operated by a drunk driver.

The good news is that you can’t be charged with a DUI. That particular law only impacts people who are physically operating the vehicle at the time.

That doesn’t mean you’re completely off the hook. It’s entirely likely that the police officer will consider other things they can charge you. It’s not uncommon for drunken passengers to be charged with public drunkenness, underage drinking, resisting arrest, disturbing the peace, etc. In many cases, the exact charges you face will be determined by how badly you behaved when the car you were in was pulled over. If you sit quietly, do everything the officer asks, and find a sober driver to give you a lift home, it’s likely the officer will let you go.

What if You Caused the Accident

There have been cases when a passenger was charged with a DUI. Some of these cases involve a drunk driver, but there have been some where the driver was sober and was helping transport a drunk passenger. Most of these situations involved the passenger grabbing the steering wheel and yanking the car off course. Since you were behaving as the operator at that moment, you can be charged with a DUI.

Civil Liability

Things can take a different turn if the officer suspects that you knew the driver was drunk. It hasn’t happened in California yet, but some states have gone so far as to create DUI by consent laws that means anyone who knew the driver was drunk and failed to stop them from getting behind the wheel faces serious criminal charges.

In California, knowingly allowing someone to get behind the wheel even though you knew they were drunk creates the perfect situation for anyone who was hurt by the drunk driver to file a civil lawsuit against you. In many cases, this type of lawsuit favors the plaintiff, meaning you could lose everything. Not only could the victims of the drunk driving accident file civil charges against you, if your drunk driving friend is hurt or killed in the accident, their family might also name you in a lawsuit.

If you are unable to convince a drunk friend to let you drive them home, it’s in your best interest to contact the police and alert them to the situation. By letting everyone know there is a problem, you create proof that you did everything in your power to stop them from driving which makes it difficult for anyone to mount a civil case against you.