Author Archives: Bill Weisband

Let Freedom Ring…Really?

Our holiday for Martin Luther King has always marked the reading of the “I Have a Dream” speech in my home. My children have gathered around our kitchen table since they were small to listen as I read the immortal words of Martin Luther King Jr. from William Bennett’s “The Book of Virtues”. It always sparks interesting conversations about slavery and segregation, Jim Crow laws, civil rights and racism. My purpose is to bring into focus that our freedom here in America comes with a history: 250 years of slavery, that’s a long time, 100 years of “Jim Crow” and Jim Crow Laws  and in our present day the cultural divide between white Americans and black Americans. Black and white Americans alike should invest a little time researching some of the laws that black people had to deal with right up until 1961 and beyond, like these:

North Carolina

Textbooks: Books shall not be interchangeable between the white and colored schools, but shall continue to be used by the race first using them. North Carolina

Libraries: The state librarian is directed to fit up and maintain a separate place for the use of the colored people who may come to the library for the purpose of reading books or periodicals. North Carolina

Militia: The white and colored militia shall be separately enrolled, and shall never be compelled to serve in the same organization.No organization of colored troops shall be permitted where white troops are available, and while white permitted to be organized, colored troops shall be under the command of white officers. North Carolina

Transportation: The…Utilities Commission…is empowered and directed to require the establishment of separate waiting rooms at all stations for the white and colored races. 

Or These From Alabama:

Restaurants: It shall be unlawful to conduct a restaurant or other place for the serving of food in the city, at which white and colored people are served in the same room, unless such white and colored persons are effectually separated by a solid partition extending from the floor upward to a distance of seven feet or higher, and unless a separate entrance from the street is provided for each compartment. Alabama

Pool and Billiard Rooms: It shall be unlawful for a negro and white person to play together or in company with each other at any game of pool or billiards. Alabama

Toilet Facilities, Male: Every employer of white or negro males shall provide for such white or negro males reasonably accessible and separate toilet facilities.


Mental Hospitals: The Board of Control shall see that proper and distinct apartments are arranged for said patients, so that in no case shall Negroes and white persons be together. Georgia

Intermarriage: It shall be unlawful for a white person to marry anyone except a white person. Any marriage in violation of this section shall be void. Georgia

Barbers: No colored barber shall serve as a barber [to] white women or girls. Georgia

Burial: The officer in charge shall not bury, or allow to be buried, any colored persons upon ground set apart or used for the burial of white persons.

In my Bail Bond Practice I find myself sitting with a young black male filling out paperwork and collecting information about his family, his work or school or lack thereof and there it is, staring at me eye to eye, the outcome and offspring of 350 years of racial injustice. Sometimes I just want to say “I’m sorry”. Sorry for the hand humanity has dealt you, sorry for the cycle of poverty and psychological poverty that keeps spinning through your generations and I am also a little surprised at how little you know about your own predicament. How could you commit a crime that could once again rob you of your freedom in America, tattoo you with an inmate number and a jail sentence in the worlds most populated prisons and further throw your people, past and future, down the drain of social slavery. Wake up Black People! You have a responsibility to your Great Grandmothers and Great Grandfathers to lift yourself up, not letting their struggle go to waste. Educate yourselves and be free so you can be there for your children to teach them about the menace of racism and injustice, be there at the kitchen table to read and reread the “I have a Dream Speech”. Martin Luther King Jr. deserves it! It is mandatory!

Red, Yellow, Black or White! We are precious in HIS sight!

God Bless!



The Gift of Freedom

Christmas week is always one of the busiest bail bonding weeks of the year. I can picture exactly how it goes down, wife looks at husband and says, “I want Johnny home for Christmas.”  Then a tear and that seals the deal. It is usually a bad idea to bring a rebellious addict home for the holidays, the bad medicine of incarceration and separation from loved ones is sometimes just the right potion to cause Johnnie to come to his senses…kind of like the prodigal son who came to his senses in the pig pen when he contemplated eating the fecal covered pig slop and he had an epiphany: “better to be a slave in my Fathers house than be here squandering my life with pigs.”  Posting your bail will get you out of jail, I can purchase your temporary freedom but freedom doesn’t mean your free. Jesus said “I am the way and the truth and the life.”   The way you should go, the truth you should know, and the life everlasting.  Find the truth and the truth will set you free…I don’t want to get preachy about Christmas, after all it’s a birthday party, we should celebrate but after 12 years of posting bonds for over 10,000 clients I can tell you that no one has ever permanently turned their life around without the transitional “come to Jesus” experience  resulting in the death of their flesh desire and the birth of their God desire. It goes like this: A Holy Spirit event that reveals to a person their true self, their brokenness, self-centered selfishness, depravity and an acute awareness how they have crushed the dear ones that loved them most, their Mom and Dad, wives, husbands, children and friends. It is a life changing event. You don’t yet know who Christ is but you no longer want to be the person you have become. It’s horrible, beautiful surrender. Dead to yourself, born again and alive in Christ. He saves you.  He offers, you accept. The Gift of Freedom.


Home For The Holidays…

The Christmas season is in full swing.  Every radio station is playing our favorite Christmas songs.  The malls are packed, our neighborhoods are decorated with wonderful light displays and nativity scenes.  But something is missing.  Yes, something IS missing.  It’s the loved one who is incarcerated at the Rappahannock Regional Jail, or some other fine Virginia institution that houses inmates who are being held prior to trial.  Hopefully, they have a reasonable bond that loving family members could post if they choose to do so.  There is usually a good reason why they haven’t chosen to post the bond so far.  That’s right.  You got it.  It’s usually heroin.  Mom and Dad love you, Grandpa and Grandma miss you, but they want to give you enough time to get clean.  They’d rather have you in jail where you are safe than in the cemetery where you are dead.  But as the day that we celebrate the birth of Jesus gets closer and closer, many of my clients add bail bond to their Christmas list.  Without fail, I will be at the jail Christmas Eve and Christmas Morning making sure that your loved ones are home for the holidays.  God bless you, and Merry Christmas!

National Assault Week

It happens every year like some kind of angry tradition, Brother Bill comes in to town to visit family for the holidays. Ohio is where he does his day to day but his Brother and Sister-in-law live in Virginia. They have been gracious enough to open their home to there beloved relatives for the much anticipated Christmas celebration and everyone is having a big time until…Jim and Jack show up. That’s right,  Jim Beam and Jack Daniels can add life to any party and wouldn’t you know it, it was Jack who made Brother Bill say to his gracious host, “You know you are awful lucky to have a wife like Sue, she’s a great lady. I’m glad you don’t treat her like you treated your other wives. She’s a great lady and she deserves the best…if she knew what an asshole you were while we were growing up she probably would have never married you in the first place. Yep you were the biggest asshole in town and for many years I was embarrassed to be your brother.” That is usually how the assault equation is created. Jack Daniels+Rude comments + insults in front of wife and kids= punch in the mouth. By the time I get to meet brother Bill (at the local jail) every one is calmed down, hung over and most of the time embarrassed and apologetic. When you go to your in-laws house for Christmas be a blessing, not a drunk. If you do decide to drink and start a ruck-ass, have your bail bondsman on speed dial.

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Marijuana is legal in some states But Don’t Dare Have it in Virginia!

Police may not see marijuana as a significant crime based on the much talked about Drug Enforcement Administration’s “2015 National Drug Threat Assessment Summary.”

Evidently the DEA asked a nationally representative sample of over 1,000 law enforcement agencies what they saw as their biggest drug threat. Marijuana came in at the bottom of the list, named by only 6 percent of survey respondents but don’t dare get caught with marijuana in Virginia.

Most police departments name heroin and meth as their top drug threats in their communities. The threat of heroin has more than quadrupled since 2007, after all it’s a lot cheaper than prescription painkillers and easier to get!

Researchers have known for a long time that compared to other recreational substances, including alcohol, marijuana doesn’t cause that much harm. It’s probably even safer than many people think. You might want to be more concerned with getting arrested than potential harm from marijuana.  You also may want to put your bail bondsman on speed dial. In Virginia any Bail Bondsman will tell you that 80% of their clients actually site alcohol as the primary driver of their crime. The Virginia ABC Board states that sales in 2014 was over $800,000,000  – really, that is a lot of booze!.

Arrests for marijuana is a common tale in Stafford Virginia. Cops keep arresting people for marijuana possession, maybe it is just low-hanging fruit but Marijuana is by far the most widely used illegal drug. More users means more potential arrestees. These arrests are no joke for the people caught up in them, and they get you a free ride to the Rappahannock Regional Jail. Thank God your Bail Bondsman will be there to save you but it takes precious police time and resources away from more serious crimes, like rape and murder.

Are You a Bad Billy?

There are a lot of Bad Billy’s in the world. Some are down right intentional and some really don’t know that they are bad…Do you stop in the local watering hole for a couple of beers with your buds on the way home from work? Sounds harmless right? Nope, you are a Bad Billy. Tag light out gets you pulled over on the way home from the watering hole and of course you answer, yea I had a couple of beers. Step out of the car sir and the rest is a well rehearsed dance of sobriety tests and breathalyzers. Just .08 is all it takes, 2.5 beers for most of us and you are calling your Bail Bondsman to come and post your bail. You have been a bad boy Billy. It’s classic, some guy passes you on the right pulls in front of you and slams on his breaks. You can’t believe it but he is actually flipping you off in his rear view mirror. You don’t know exactly what it was that you did but you don’t take that crap from anybody so you send the same love signal to him and just when it appears that he is challenging you to pull over..he moves to the shoulder while you blow your horn and flip him the bird, See ya! incident over right? Not quite. Just before your exit on 95 you notice the blue lights of a trooper behind you with yet another invitation to pull it over on the shoulder and this time you accept. It seems someone called in your tag number as the person who brandished a firearm and caused them to evade by pulling off on to the shoulder of Interstate 95. “I just flipped him the bird”, he is the one who slammed on his brakes and tried to get me to pull over and…”do you have a firearm”? the trooper asks. “Well yes I do and here is my concealed weapons permit” and just when the trooper is ordering you to step out of the vehicle it dawns on you. It is your word against his, he lucked out because like many of us you have a concealed weapons permit. The magistrate may look at that little fact and find probable cause. That’s right you are a Bad Billy, under arrest for brandishing a firearm. I post Bail for a lot of Bad Billys. Let’s just love each other and be quick to forgive. If you can’t seem to manage that, save my number in your phone…I’ll be there.

But That’s My Medication…

You have seen them before, little plastic boxes with the days of the week stamped on the compartments, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, you know we put our pills in there so we can organize our medication. Or if you’re a guy you just slip a couple of prescribed vicoden into your pocket in case your tooth starts to bother you. Last night I helped a fellow get out of jail for possession of Drugs/Schedule 1 or 2 because his pain medication fell out of his wallet when he was producing his license for a traffic stop. Oh yea he’ll probably produce his prescription at his trial and his charges will be dismissed but he still went to jail, have at least 2 court dates and have the arrest: not conviction,  on his criminal history.

Calling a bail bondsman and paying the $100.00 will seem like a sweet dream compared to what comes next.

He was placed on pretrial supervision, it is kind of like pre-conviction probation. It sort of flies in the face of the presumption of innocence and is arguably one of the driving factors in the alarming and unprecedented and ever-increasing incarceration rate in America.

Pretrial service agencies started out as what seemed like a great and noble idea. In 1961, Russian born philanthropist Louis Schweitzer and magazine editor Herb Sturz (Open Society Institute) saw an opportunity through then Attorney General, Bobby Kennedy to alter the bail system in New York City. It appeared that many inmates of color were being held on bonds they could not or would not pay. We in the Bail Community know that very few people stay in jail because of money…they typically have burned every bridge they’ve crossed and no family member is willing to indemnify them. One of the huge problems with pretrial service agencies is the removal of family influence on the offender. To five you an idea of the toll the pretrial services act of 1982 has taken on America. In 1982 there were 139 people per 100,000 incarcerated in the U.S. As of 2009 there were 754 per 100,000…. More on this later.

In the end, these cases usually come down to a scenario that looks like this: Plead guilty to a felony and you will serve no jail time, 3 years probation, fines community service and a drug class. Plead guilty to a misdemeanor and get 1 year in jail,(misdemeanor time in Virginia is served at 50% so 6 months in jail) How this common practice in pretrial negotiations benefits the State or society is a mystery…Stay tuned to 101 ways to get arrested on the internet!

What Did Bad Billy Do Now

It all sounded innocent enough, Bad Billy’s friend called him up and asked him if he wanted to make some extra money. It’s Saturday morning and that is just what the doctor ordered. Billy’s friend told him that his friend’s Grandpa had a bunch of junk on his farm that he wanted removed. “We can take it to the dump or we can take it to the scrap yard and keep all the money we make from cashing in the scrap metal”. Bad Billy  was all in! So Bad Billy meets up with his friend and they drive to the farm, roll down the driveway, pull up to the barn and get to work.

Old tractor rakes, plows, metal buildings that have fallen down, old engines, engine parts, rolls of electrical wire…you get the picture. $745.00 in cash for one hard days work feels pretty good right? Here is the problem: There is no “Grandfather” just a guy that suckered poor Billy into helping him take scrap metal off a property he had no right to be on. Bad Billy  was charged with 12 counts of  grand larceny, obtaining money under false pretense and conspiracy to commit larceny.  Bad Billy Bail Bonds posted a $1500.00 bond for Billy and you can best believe that the Commonwealth Attorney is not going to be buying the “I was just trying to help out my friend and make a little money” story. As a matter of fact it is quite possible that during the full day of loading “scrap” metal you might have sensed that something wasn’t quite right about the whole scene. Later,  when you are sitting in the back of a cop car, you would be sure of it.


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