Sonoma North County Detention Facility Inmate Bail & Bonds

Search for an Inmate in Sonoma County

Sonoma North County Detention Facility

Address:
2254 Ordinance Road
Santa Rosa, CA 95403

Phone:

707-565-1400

Bail and Bond Instructions for Sonoma County

What is Bail?

Bail is what the arrested in Sonoma County must pay or do to stay out of jail until the first court appearance. 

The agreement to bail acts as a promise that the arrested will return to court for court dates and trial. Bail usually refers to a dollar amount, but bail can also mean something that has to be done, or a condition such as reporting to an officer of the court, a curfew, restraining orders or attending a treatment program. 

Bail is usually a significant enough amount of money and/or condition that the person will be negatively impacted and has incentive to return to court and not flee. A flight risk usually means that the person would flee the area, and not necessary that they are going to take an airplane. 

If a judge in Sonoma County feels that the arrested will return to court for further proceedings, the arrested could be released under a conditional release without needing to pay bail money. This is called Released on Own Recognizance, or ROR.  

Conditions for ROR might be to obey all court orders and laws, maintain contact with the lawyer, report changes in residence or have no contact with the victim. Family support will show the court that there are people who will make sure that the defendant makes it to court. 

If the judge or bail schedule determines that the defendant would be a danger to the public if they were released, bail can be denied, and the person will be detained in the Sonoma North County Detention Facility until the case is resolved or goes to trial. 

In California, bail can be denied under the following circumstances:

Capital crimes as with murder, acts of violence or threats to another when the evidence given supports the likelihood that the arrested committed the crime or will act upon the threats. Bail can also be denied if terms of parole, mandatory supervision, post-release orders or felony parole are violated. 

What is the difference between Bail and Bond?

Bail and bond are used interchangeably to mean the same thing but technically, they are different.

The bail is the amount to be paid and a bond is a signed document promising payment of the bail amount with certain conditions.

Think of a bond as a loan to pay for the bail.  

The bond payment is always written to the court in your municipality, Sonoma County or district directly and does not go through the defendant. Chances of obtaining a bond from a bond company or clerk of court are better if family is involved.  

The thought of being in jail can cause the arrested to panic and try to secure a bond immediately.

DO NOT panic and take the time to understand all the options.  

More courts are now trying to work with defendants to make bail work and might provide non-monetary options or even reduce the bail.  

Payments to a bond company are not refundable. It is a long process to get back property title or money that was given to the clerk of court or bondsperson to secure the bond.  This could put your loved ones into a difficult financial situation. 

Another reason not to unnecessarily rush into securing a bond is that if the court notes that you came up with the money to pay a bond company, they may assume you have resources to pay a defense attorney and decline public defense.  

On the other hand, as anyone who has ever been involved in their criminal defense understands, fighting your case while ‘out on the streets’ gives you a much better chance of either winning, or getting a more favorable sentence.  

What are the different types of bonds in Sonoma County?

Based on a review of information from the arrest, the judge or bail officer will determine and notify the accused of which types of bonds are available to them.

To describe the types of bonds, let’s use an example of buying your neighbor’s car. Your neighbor decides the price of the car and how they would be paid. Similarly, the court (meaning a police or bail officer, clerk of court, bail magistrate or judge) determines the bail amount and how it would be paid.

Here are different options that the seller of the car or the court might consider:

You could pay full asking price for the car in cash. This is similar to paying cash bail. The full amount of bail would be paid to the town or county clerk or at the jail. Cash, cashier’s checks and credit cards are usually accepted.

You could sign an agreement on your own or with another person to pay for the car at a future date knowing that your neighbor would know where to find you if you stopped payment. This would be similar to a cash bond or a personal recognizance (PR) bond which are bonds to where someone representing the defendant signs paperwork promising to pay the bail amount if the defendant does not show up to court. There is no money due up front. 

If the defendant does not show up, the full amount of the bail will be due to the court and the people who signed the paperwork will be responsible for paying the court and the court will send the sheriff’s department to arrest you. 

Cash bonds and PR bonds are types of unsecured bonds because you are not securing it with any money down. In bond terms, a surety is a person who will be responsible for making sure that you will show to court and will be responsible to pay the bond if the arrested person does not show up.

Surety can be family, friend or a bondsperson. Your attorney cannot act as a surety.

You can put a deposit down for your neighbor’s car and sign an agreement that the car will be paid off at a later date. Cash percentage in lieu of bonds is when the defendant pays a percentage of the bail amount, usually 10%, to the court which then holds the money until the case is over. 

The amount is returned to the person who paid the 10% after the case is over. In most cases, the full amount is not returned if there are court fees or fines due. This is a type of surety bond if another person signs the bond paperwork.

You could sign an agreement that if the car were not paid off, that your neighbor would get your house or something of value.

A property bond is a bond that the courts might consider in which the bond is pledged in land or home real estate (mobile homes are not accepted).  

Usually, the property must be in the same state as the courts, and it must be worth at least 1 ½ - 2 times the amount of the bond.  

There are multiple court fees involved to execute a property bond with the courts and a tedious process to get the property deed back. This is another type of surety bond if another person or a bond company is used to secure the bond. 

You could also go to a local bank and take out a car loan offering property or anything of value for collateral. You may get someone to co-sign on the loan and offer their property. The bank charges fees, interest and could keep your property if you did not pay the loan back, or even on time.  

A professional bondsperson makes money, at least 10% of the bond amount by providing you with a “loan” called a bond. The percent that they charge is fixed by the state and cannot be negotiated. The defendant or surety does not get that 10% or more back even if the terms of the bail are met. 

With a property bond, the property deed would need to be signed over to the bondsperson and everyone on the deed would need to be involved. 

Since the bondsperson signed off, to be responsible that you show to court as your surety, they can send a bounty hunter to bring you to court if you flee. A bondsperson does not have to give you a bond if the defendant seems to be too much of a risk.

Ask the bondsperson to explain all the costs: percentage, fees or court fees. There is never a reason to rush through signing the paperwork with a bond company. Make sure that everything told to you is in writing and that you understand what you are signing.

Ask questions, and if you feel rushed or don’t understand the contract with the bond company, you might want to call another one.

(There have been phone scams where a bond company calls and informs a person that their family member has been arrested and they ask for financial information.  A bondsperson will not call asking for money without involvement of the arrested.)

Does Sonoma County California have bail?

Yes, California is a bail state, and Sonoma County allows bail; however California is among a growing number of states who will attempt to release a defendant under bail conditions and/or a reasonable dollar amount rather than impose a dollar amount that cannot be met.

What kind of bonds are accepted in Sonoma County?

The court will consider what type of bonds from the following list depending on the circumstances of the arrest.

1.    Judicial public bail/bond is the release of a defendant without any money but must have some kind of supervision while out on bail. 

2.    Cash bail is payment by the defendant or another person in part or in full of the total bail.  The Sonoma County Clerk of Court supervises this bond. 

3.    Property bail is when one or more people put up property owned in the state of California to cover the bond.  

4.    Professional surety bail is when the defendant is release on bail by having a professional bond company execute the bond.

5.    Unsecured bond is where the arrested is released from custody without having to pay a dollar amount upfront. Instead, the arrested and/or surety signs a bond that says that they will pay the full bond amount if they don’t show up to court. Even though there is no money paid, there are usually conditions such as supervised release, curfew, restraining order or attendance at a treatment center.

6.    A secured bond is where someone called a surety puts up property with greater value than the bond. A professional bondsperson can be a surety in California or a family or friend with property value that exceeds the amount of the bond amount.

Who can set bail in Sonoma County?

For most misdemeanors, the police and bail magistrate can set bail at the time of the arrest and initial detention.

There are many factors to consider whether the arrested should be given bail and released or be detained until the arraignment. If the circumstances are such that the bail recommendations do not apply, then bail is set by the judge in Superior Court. The Superior Court judge can also consider changing the initial bail terms at the first court appearance.

When is bail set in California?

For some lesser crimes, bail can be set at the time of initial detention and for other crimes, bail is set at the arraignment which must occur within 48 hours of the arrest. 

Can I get the bail or bond reduced in Sonoma County California? 

Yes, your attorney can request a bond reduction if the bail had already been set.

In Sonoma County California, who can pay bail for me? 

The person posting bail should be a relative or close friend, called a surety, because they are promising and taking responsibility that you will return to court to get their money back. 

A surety is not responsible for court fees or paying off personal debts for the defendant. A professional bondsperson who is approved by the State of California could be the surety and execute a bond to the court on your behalf.

Can bail be paid online in Sonoma County California?   

Yes, California does offer online bail payment. Please contact the jail for specific information on how to pay bail: Go to the Sonoma North County Detention Facility for more information about the jails in Sonoma County.

What options are there to pay bail in Sonoma County California? 

Most all jail and courts accept cash, a cashier or bankers’ check. Some accept a credit card with fees. Please contact the jail for specific information on what methods of payment are accepted.

Go to the Sonoma North County Detention Facility for more information about posting bail in Sonoma County.  

Will I get all my bond money back in California? 

Bail money is returned to the person who paid the bail; in whole or in part once the case is finished. There may be fees, restitution (money to pay for damage caused by the crime) or fines that come out of that amount.

If you used a bondsperson, you would not get your 10% back. Property is returned by the court or bondsperson after the appropriate requests and formal paperwork are completed with the court.

Can I get bail or a bond with no money down in Sonoma County? 

The judge or officer who sets bail determines which kind of bail will be an option for you, but a cash bond and PR bonds usually do not require cash down, though you might have to pay court fees.

A cash bond or a personal recognizance (PR) bond are bonds where someone representing the defendant signs paperwork promising to pay the bail amount if the defendant does not show up to court. There is no money due up front. 

If the defendant does not show up, the full amount of the bail will be due to the court and the people who signed the paperwork will be responsible for paying the court and the court will send the sheriff’s department to arrest you. 

Cash bonds and PR bonds are types of unsecured bonds because you are not securing it with any money down. In bond terms, a surety is a person who will be responsible to make sure that you will show to court and will be responsible to pay the bond if the arrested person does not show up.

A surety can be family, friend or a bondsperson. Your attorney cannot act as a surety.

What are the least expensive and affordable bail bonds in California?  

The Sonoma North County Detention Facility or court in this jurisdiction can provide you with a list of approved and licensed bond companies, but they cannot recommend a specific company. You are not obligated to use the first company available and can call several companies to compare what kind of bonds that the bondsperson is willing to execute.  

The percentage of bail that the bond company can charge is set, usually at 10%, by the state and cannot be negotiated.

Who do I call to find out the Bond for an Inmate?

Please call the jail at 707-565-1400 for the type of bond and any information that is required for a particular individual at Sonoma North County Detention Facility.
A bond is set according to a court-approved schedule.
The purpose of the bond is to assure the offender's appearance in court.

Instructions on how to post Bail or Bond in Sonoma County

Because Sonoma County and California can change their bail bond procedures, it is always best to call either the Sonoma North County Detention Facility at 707-565-1400, or the court in the jurisdiction (i.e. Municipal Court, District Court, etc.) where the offender was charged, right after an arrestee has been booked. 

Ask the staff at the Sonoma North County Detention Facility or the Sonoma County Court Clerk these specific questions:

  1. Is the defendant eligible for bail or a bond?
  2. How much will the bail or bond be, and what are the additional fees?
  3. Where do I go to pay it?
  4. Are there any days or times of the day or night when I cannot post bail?
  5. What types of payment are allowed? Cash? Money order? Credit card? What types of credit cards? Property or other collateral? Surety bonds?
  6. Do I have to use a bail or bond agent?

If you feel the bail is too high and you wish to get it reduced, contact a lawyer or the defendant's public defender and get them to look into what they can do to get a bail reduction. The sooner you get working on this the quicker you will get your loved one released. 

This entire process will go smoother and faster with a criminal attorney or bail agent handling it for you.

Option 1 - How to Post Bail using Cash for a Defendant at Sonoma North County Detention Facility

The first option, a cash bond, is to pay the full bail amount in cash, cashier's check, or money order. Personal Checks are not accepted.

Depending on the crime, this amount could be anywhere from $100 to $75,000 or more.

To pay a cash bond, go to Sonoma North County Detention Facility or to the court where the bail hearing occurred. Going directly to the jail will quicken the release of the defendant as any bail paperwork processed at the court will have to be transferred to the jail.

Cashier's Checks and Money Orders may be made out to Sonoma North County Detention Facility where the defendant is being held, but usually to the Sonoma County Sheriff's Office or to the Sonoma County Court.

To purchase money orders visit any Western Union, Moneygram or Post Office.

Option 2 - How to Post a Private or Surety Bond for a Defendant at Sonoma North County Detention Facility

In the event that someone does not have the full bond amount available to him or her, there is what is called a private bond or surety bond.

This is an agreement made with a bail agent or bondsman who will post the full bail amount. In return, the defendant and/or cosigner will pay a premium to the bail agent. This premium will be 10-15% of the full bail amount.



For example, if bail is posted at $5,000, then the premium will cost approximately $500-$750.

A bail agent will often require some form of collateral, for example, a lien on a house, a car or jewelry. This is to ensure that if the defendant skips bail, or does not appear in court, the bail agent has some sort of compensation for the full bail amount being paid.

Remember, by making an agreement with a bail agent the signatory takes responsibility for paying the full bail amount if the defendant does not appear in court.

Option 3 - How to Post a Property Bond for a Defendant at Sonoma North County Detention Facility

If you are a landowner in Sonoma County you may be able to post a property bond. Property within Sonoma County may be used as collateral to bail someone out. All owners of the property must be present to sign the bond in order for this to happen.

To find if property located outside of Sonoma County can be used as collateral, call a local bail or bond agent or contact a defense lawyer.

Click here for additional information on how to post bail at Sonoma North County Detention Facility.

Who can post Bail or Bond for a Defendant at Sonoma North County Detention Facility?

Anyone over the age of 18 who can produce a valid government-issued photo ID can post bail. Accepted forms of ID include a Photo Driver's License, Passport, or Motor Vehicle issued ID.

In many circumstances, if the defendant has the resources, they can post their own cash bail from jail.

Surety Bonds are arranged by a third party, typically a California state licensed Bail Bond firm.

Juveniles may only be bailed or bonded out of custody by a parent or legal guardian.

Sonoma County Justice System Flowchart

When will the Cash Bail or Collateral be returned to me?

Money or collateral will not be returned until the defendant's court case is finished, so realistically it could take several months to years, depending on the severity of the charges. If a defendant posts his or her own bail, Sonoma County Court may retain whatever amount of fines or fees have accumulated throughout the trial.

What happens to my Bail or Collateral if the Defendant misses Court?

The Sonoma County Judge may order a failure to appear warrant for the person's arrest or the Judge may order a Bail Commissioner's Letter be issued that will be sent to the person with a new court date.

If cash bail was paid, the entire amount may be forfeited.

How Do You Deposit Money in an Inmate's Account at the Sonoma North County Detention Facility

Option 1 - Dropping Money at the Jail
Bring money to the jail in person. 
Either the jail personnel will process the Inmate Account payment or you will use a self-serve kiosk in the lobby that accepts cash, debit or Visa and MC credit cards.


Option 2 - Mail the Inmate Deposit to the Jail
Mailing a deposit takes more time to process than the other methods but can be done if you live too far away to bring it in person.
Never send cash. Always send a Money Order from the US Post Office.
Make the Money Order out to the inmate and put their Inmate ID# in memo section of the Money Order.
Mail to the Sonoma North County Detention Facility:
2254 Ordinance Road
Santa Rosa, CA 95403

For complete information on depositing money at the Sonoma North County Detention Facility, including limits, where to drop or mail them and anything else, check out our Inmate Money page.


 

Sonoma North County Detention Facility Inmate Mail Policies and Address - What Can You Send, and Where?

For inmates receiving mail in the Sonoma North County Detention Facility there are different addresses and policies depending on the inmate's status, as well as what type of mail they are receiving; personal mail, legal mail, subscriptions or books sent from a third-party such as Amazon.

All mail is to be shipped to the Sonoma North County Detention Facility:
Inmate Name
North County Detention Facility
2254 Ordinance Road
Santa Rosa, CA 95403


For complete information on mail policies, what you can send an inmate and what address to send them, check out our Inmate Mail page.


 

How to Deposit Money Online for an Inmate in Sonoma County

To deposit money online for an inmate in Sonoma North County Detention Facility follow these steps:

  • Register to open an account, or Sign In to JailATM, a service that acts as a bank for inmates in Sonoma County.
  • After registering and signing in, select 'Send Money Now'.
  • Choose California, then choose Sonoma North County Detention Facility
  • Type in your inmate's last name or their Inmate ID.
  • Select your inmate.
  • Input an amount to deposit to your inmate in Sonoma North County Detention Facility, and then input your payment method. 
  • NOTE: There may be a limit on how much money you can send your inmate in Sonoma County at any one time.
  • If you need to phone customer support, call 877-810-0914.

For all information, tips and procedures for sending money to an inmate in Sonoma North County Detention Facility, or depositing money at the jail, over the phone or by mail, check out our Send Money Page for Sonoma County.


 

How Do You Communicate with an Inmate in the Sonoma North County Detention Facility by Phone

Follow these instructions on how to open an account with GTL Connect Network (aka Viapath Technologies)

  • Advance Pay - This phone account allows you to prepay so that your inmate can call you (and only you) whenever he/she wants and the cost of each call is deducted from your balance. You can even be notified by text when your balance gets low. You still have the option of accepting or rejecting each call.
  • Pin Debit  -  This option allows you to fund an inmate's commissary account and lets him pay for phone calls to you and others with the money. You will have no control over who your inmate calls.
  • Voicemail  -  You can leave a secure voicemail without having to contact the facility. When you call the local phone number for a facility offering Inmate Voicemail (call Customer Service at 877-650-4249 to get the local voicemail number for Sonoma North County Detention Facility, you will be informed of the cost for leaving a message. To leave your message, simply select the inmate by ID number. Then, record your voicemail.

For full instructions on the Sonoma North County Detention Facility Inmate Phone System, what the costs are, how it works, and tips and guidelines on rules, regulations and saving money on calls, check out our Inmate Phones Page.


 

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