When thinking of the term “bounty hunter” the first image many might see in their minds is of either “Boba Fett” or “Dog the Bounty Hunter”. The second is closer to reality. As fugitive recovery is less about being the lap dog for Darth Vader out to collect the likes of Han Solo and Chewbacca and more about keeping the streets safe.
That aside, there are many pop culture references to the profession that lead many to assume the job is something that it’s not. Criminals escape captivity all the time, and it’s too much of a burden for law enforcement to track down everybody on the wanted list. This presents a unique job opportunity for those seeking adventure and serving their city.
Seeking a Bounty
More than anything, a bounty hunter or bail bondsmen needs proper training. Dealing with criminals, some of whom are violent, is not as simple as locating them and bringing them to the station. Often times, a struggle will ensue, whether verbal or, hopefully not, physical. At this time, the bail bondsmen must be vigilant and political. He must appeal to the fugitive’s humanity in the effort of helping them get their lives back on track.
As such, there are a number of organizations and institutions whereby would be bail bondsmen can learn the skills necessary for the work and receive qualification training. One such group is the Fugitive Recovery Network (FRN) founded in 2001. Their tagline reads: “They can run, but they cannot hide.” Their website is the only accredited place where bounty hunters can collaborate on the Web. This resource enables bail bondsmen to work together for the greater purpose. Whether the help is information, tracking, or simple advice, this can be a bail bondsmen’s best friend.
Not Every State
It is also critical to know the laws, regulations, and limitations of the profession. Some states have banned the practice, or only allow it under extremely regulated guidelines. These include: Florida, Illinois, Kentucky, North Carolina, Oregon, South Carolina, Wisconsin, and the District of Columbia. If one has career aspirations of being a bail bondsmen, it is important to study the rules in their state. If all else fails, it’s a big country, so moving to another location is always an option.
Provisions of Note
The rules and regulations are of five categories. The first is to know the state statutes related to the profession. The second is to understand what is needed to obtain a Bail agent license. The third is regarding state laws for arrest authority of bail bondsmen. The fourth covers the agent’s ability to hire others for assistance in obtaining the fugitive.
The fifth and last relates to how closely related or not one would work with local law enforcement. This also includes the measures one should take after they’ve captured the criminal. The provisions for each state are listed online at various sources, including the previously mentioned FRN.
The professional organization that regulates bail bondsmen and bounty hunters is the National Association of Fugitive Recovery Agents. The definition of bounty is “monetary reward,” so the difficulty of this task is compensated in kind. This is perhaps the main reason people enter this line of work. Besides the thrill of the hunt, money is often well earned in the field. Perhaps not as much as Vader payed Fett, but still comparable.
Kyle Carter is an avid blogger and professional bail bondsman with C&K OKC Bail Bonds in Oklahoma City. Kyle is passionate about sharing information online through his blogs, on youtube, and provides local bail bonds services in OKC to the local community.