Everyone arrested in Florida is supposed to be brought before a judge within 24 hours of being arrested for a first appearance. Generally, unless you’re facing capital charges or charges for a felony that’s punishable by life imprisonment where the proof of guilt is clear or the presumption of guilt is great, you’re entitled to pre-trial release with reasonable conditions. It’s important to consult an experienced St. Petersburg criminal defense attorney if you are concerned about pre-trial release for yourself or a loved one. At Hanlon Law we fight for the rights of the accused, and may be able to secure a pre-trial release with more favorable conditions than you may be able to get on your own.Pre-trial Releases
In making a decision about pre-trial release, the court will look at whether the arrest affidavit in your case establishes probable cause to hold you. Sometimes the first appearance is continued so that problems with the arrest affidavit may be cured, but if these problems aren’t cured, you’ll likely be released on your own recognizance or on a less expensive bond. At the first appearance, a bond can be set and the amount of bond may vary depending on whether you’re being charged with a felony or misdemeanor and the degree of the crime. Usually, first degree felonies come with a higher bond amount than do second degree felonies, for example. If you’re charged with a capital felony, you’ll likely be held on no bond until there can be a more comprehensive hearing.
The court presumes it is better to release on nonmonetary conditions, except where you are charged with a dangerous crime. Dangerous crimes can include aggravated battery, aggravated assault, arson, kidnapping, child abuse, homicide, manslaughter, robbery, carjacking, lewd or lascivious assault, and sexual battery.
The court, when setting conditions, is supposed to consider what conditions would reasonably protect the community from the risk of physical injury to people, make sure that you come to trial, and maintain the integrity of judicial process. Conditions can include restrictions on where you live or with whom you associate or where you travel; they may include placing you in the custody of someone who will supervise you; they may entail execution of a bail bond with enough solvent sureties; they may include a curfew. You may also be required to wear an ankle monitor.Pre-Trial Detention
The court can order that you be detained pre-trial where it finds a substantial probability that you previously violated the conditions of your release, that you threatened or intimidated or injured a potential witness, juror or judicial officer, or that you tried to do so. It can also detain you if you’re charged with trafficking in controlled substances, or where you’re charged with DUI manslaughter.Revocation
Often pre-trial release conditions are harsh. However, if you can’t follow them, the prosecutor can move to revoke the pre-trial release. This means you’d be held without bond until the case is resolved. If you’re arrested for a new crime while on pre-trial release, the court is likely to revoke your bail based only on the arrest warrant for the new crime or a probable cause determination. It’s important to be aware that revocation of your pre-trial release could occur without an adversarial hearing. The prosecutor will only need to show evidence sufficient to support an arrest warrant on a new criminal charge or a probable cause determination.Consult a Skilled Criminal Defense Attorney in St. Petersburg
After being arrested, most people want to get back to their jobs and families. An experienced criminal defense lawyer can help you seek pre-trial release conditions that you will be able to abide by. Without legal representation, you may get conditions that are difficult to follow and wind up with your pre-trial release revoked. If you are concerned about pre-trial release in St. Petersburg, you should consult Hanlon Law. Our founder Will Hanlon has been providing criminal defense representation since 1994 and may be able to help you. Please call Hanlon Law at 727.897.5413 or contact us via our online form.