Area Bail Agents

The Bail Bondsmen Behind Area Bail Agents

Area Bail Agents is a national organization comprised of licensed bail agents (bail bondsmen) from different states across the U.S.A.  The mission of Area Bail Agents is to help families and individuals who have sustained hardships as a result of a crime.  Those hardships could be brought on as a result of being victimized, or a family member that is now incarcerated causing unexpected financial and emotional hardships.  

Area Bail Agents helps victims by connecting them to specific resources such as legal advocacy, trauma-focused therapy, psychiatric help, safe shelters, and food banks, just to name a few. There is never any charge and members rotate shifts to make sure someone is always available to assist when needed.

Agents meet once a month virtually to discuss organizational goals, and once a year we meet in person.  Throughout the year we hold various fundraisers and events to try and raise money for victims of crime.  Each event is hosted by a different bail bondsman, and money is donated to a specific cause from that agent’s city or state.  You can check out our upcoming events page for details.

Each year, Area Bail Agents solicits bail organizations from around the country to sponsor different events and provide donations to help fund our efforts for the year.  For the past 3 years, we have been fortunate enough to have the same sponsorship that we can count on.  Our Gold sponsorship (our highest level) for the past 3 years has come from Bob Block Bail Bonds.  Bob Block Bail Bonds is a bail bonding company based in St. Louis Mo.  We thank them for their loyalty and are responsible for helping us grow as an organization.

When the term bail bonds or bail bondsman is mentioned, it often has a negative connotation.  There has been evidence of bail being posted as far back as 2700 BC!  There are even clay tablets that were found in what is now modern-day Iraq that describe in detail bail bonds that were posted.

From the dark ages and into the Middle Ages in Europe, no “real” criminal justice system existed.  Those accused of a crime were expected to appear in court, but there was no real formal law that had been established.  Criminals served punishments based on how the individual court saw fit.

Around the 7th century, a court system that was more formal was introduced.  This court system was more “civilized.”  However, one problem that started to appear was that defendants fled to avoid facing any kind of penalties.  This is how the commercial surety bond system came about.  Defendants would now need to find an individual that would be responsible for them if they did not show up for court.  If they could find a person, they would be released from jail.

With the new surety system, the problem quickly became that the upper class had more wealthy associates and friends that could be responsible for them.  This is how the “bail bondsman” profession came about in England around the 13th century.  It was needed to help the lower class and middle-class people, the same way the surety system was benefitting the upper class.

From this point forward it would be a regular practice for a bail bondsman to post a piece of property, or money, in exchange for a defendant’s release from jail.  It was not until 1215 with the Magna Carta adoption that many improvements came to the justice system, and this included much clearer regulations and guidelines regarding bail bonds and surety.

With the Habeus Corpus Act and Bill of Rights, judges were no longer able to set excessive bail, and this further improved the bail system.

The first bail bond agency of record was established by Pete and Tom McDonough in San Francisco California in 1898.  It is said that these 2 brothers were of “shady” character which might be why there is an unfavorable view of the bail bonds industry today.

The Area Bail Agents organization is working hard to change public perception of the bail bonding industry.