What to do in the first 24 hours if your loved one has been arrested in Orange County

 Your loved has just been arrested and is in jail in Orange County, NC.

What do you do in the first 24 hours?


  • Write everything down: dates, who you spoke to, when you called, what was said.
  • Never discuss details of the case with your loved on over the phone. All calls to and from jail are recorded.
  • Keep going until you get answers and keep working with the defense attorney through the court process
  1. Check the Orange County Daily Custody Report: https://www.ocsonc.com/daily-custody-reports
  2. If they aren’t in there yet, call the Orange County Jail: (919) 245-2940 Ask what the charges are, whether they are felonies or misdemeanors, what the bond is, and when their first appearance court date is (typically within 24 hours)
  3. Call Orange County Pretrial Services: (919) 245-2970 Pretrial services may be able to provide more information, and may be able to supervise your loved one to reduce or eliminate the requirement that they post money. On the voicemail, leave your name, your loved one’s name, your relationship with your loved one, and a phone number where you can be reached.
  4. Go to their first appearance at the Orange County Courthouse If your loved one is not released and unable to post bond, go to their first appearance, usually in Courtroom 3 at 2 pm on the day after arrest. The Orange County Courthouse is located at 106 E. Margaret Ln, Hillsborough, NC 27278. When your loved one appears on the screen, respectfully alert the pretrial director and the judge that you are there to support them.
  5. If they have   an urgent medical issue, call Jail Medical at (919) 245-2946 or CJRD Clinical Coordinator Allison Zirkel (919) 245-2304

Information to have ready:

  • Loved one’s first and last name
  • Loved one’s date of birth
  • Agency who made the arrest (ex – Chapel Hill Police)

Information to get:

  • Charges
  • Bond amount
  • First appearance date

Information to give to the Pretrial Services Director:

  • Proof of family support
  • Proof of community ties
  • Proof your loved one is not a flight risk
  • Proof of employment or school enrollment
  • Service provider or caseworker contact information


  • Orange County Clerk’s of Court office: (919) 644-4500
  • Criminal Justice Resource Office: (919) 245-2303
  • Public Defender’s Office: (919) 643-4400


  • Find your court date: https://www.nccourts.gov/court-dates
  • Sign up for notification of court date: https://www3.nccourts.org/onlineservices/notifications/menu.sp
  • Orange County Courthouse Information: https://www.nccourts.gov/locations/orange-county
  • Orange and Chatham County Public Defender's Office: https://chathamorangepd.com/
  • Orange County Bail Bond Justice Project: https://ocbailbondjustice.org/
  • Orange County Criminal Justice Resource Department:https://www.orangecountync.gov/432/Criminal-Justice-Resource-Department

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