Monday, February 11, 2008

Utah Bounty Hunter is Busy Mom

When you hear the words, “Bounty Hunter,” you might think of vigilantes who operate just below the legal radar to hunt down bad guys. But just how legal is their job in Utah? We take a look at one woman who is cleaning up the streets of the Salt Lake Valley.

Reata Holt is the leader of the bounty hunting team in Utah known as Fox Force. She is a long-haired brunette and mother of seven who has been chasing after criminals for more than 20 years.

Threatened, assaulted and shot at, Reata has devoted her life to catching criminals. Every night begins with a quick look at her files and as soon as she gets her list of warrants; the game is on.

“I don’t look dangerous, so that’s an advantage for me,” says Reata. She says that she can keep a low-key appearance when criminals see her.

“The last thing they’re thinking is that Bounty Hunters are here.”

Bounty Hunters execute warrants on alleged criminals who post bail, but fail to show up in court. They are completely legal, if they do their job correctly.

Each Bounty Hunter has been trained, licensed by the state and registered to carry a gun.

“Things can get pretty violent,” says fellow Bounty Hunter and Fox Force team member, Dave Hendricks. “You never know what you’re walking into.”

Legally speaking, Reata and company are well within their right to break into a home and take someone off to jail. Their only catch is that they have to be absolutely certain that the person that they are looking for is inside the home.

Upon catching a criminal, Fox Force will then turn them into the local authorities in exchange for a few thousand dollars. It’s not your typical evening, but the team wouldn’t have it any other way.

“I’m sure any one of us would take a bullet for the other,” say Bounty Hunter Mark Swensen.

Police generally do not like Bounty Hunters because they say that Bounty Hunters are typical citizens doing police-like work. Some of them argue that Bounty Hunters aren’t trained the way police are.

But the numbers show that Bounty Hunters have a significant impact in the United States. Bounty Hunters catch more than 30,000 bail jumpers per year. That is about 90% of people who jump bail.

“I know this is what I was,” says Reata. “This is what I’m good at. I don’t want to do anything else.”

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thought Fox Force was an all female outfit. sorry to see it has changed. I have had great success working with these lady's out of colorado, they are very good at what they do, I would recommend them anytime, though I have not worked with the guys before.Chris.