Parsippany Pretrial Detention Lawyer
Discuss Your Case During a Free Evaluation
In this country, you are presumed innocent until proven guilty, and you have the right to a speedy trial. Recognizing these constitutional protections, in January of 2017, New Jersey's legislature enacted a law that allowed courts to make pretrial release or detention decisions based on risk assessments, as opposed to automatically imposing bail on a person charged with a crime. What this means is that if you were arrested for an offense, you might be scheduled for a pretrial detention hearing to determine whether or not you remain in custody or are released until your trial. Because the result of the hearing can have profound impacts on your life and freedoms, it's crucial to have a skilled attorney on your side fighting to protect your rights.
At The Law Offices of Christopher G. Porreca, P.C., I am committed to providing effective defense, and I will thoroughly review every detail of your case to develop a legal strategy for your pretrial detention hearing. I have over 20 years of experience, which means I understand the laws and what avenues can be explored to present your circumstances in court.
For representation from a lawyer dedicated to providing personalized and aggressive legal advocacy, call my firm at (973) 828-0009 today.
Changes to New Jersey’s Pretrial Release or Detention Processes
Before New Jersey's Bail Reform and Speedy Trial Act was enacted, a person charged with an offense would be held in custody until their trial or until they made bail. Unfortunately, when monetary bail was set for some individuals, they struggled to pay the fees, which meant an innocent person who posed no risk to society could spend months behind bars, waiting to present their case in court. After the Act became law, the pretrial process fundamentally changed.
Under the new law, when an officer arrests a person suspected of committing a crime, an automated pretrial risk assessment is conducted. The results indicate whether a complaint-summons or complaint-warrant is issued, which makes a difference in how the person's case proceeds.
If a person is charged on a complaint summons, they will be released from custody and will be notified of when they must return to court for their trial.
On the other hand, a complaint-warrant justifies an arrest, which means the individual will be held in county jail until they are scheduled for their first appearance. However, they cannot be held for more than 48 hours. During that 2-day detention period, the pretrial risk assessment process will continue.
The pretrial assessment is designed to determine the risk of the individual:
- Committing a new crime,
- Committing a new violent crime, and
- Failing to appear to court
The risk assessment is based on 9 factors that include:
- Age at current arrest
- Current violent offense
- Pending charge at the time of the offense
- Prior disorderly persons conviction
- Prior indictable conviction
- Prior violent conviction (within the past 2 years)
- Prior failure to appear (more than 2 years in the past)
- Prior incarceration sentence
Determining Release or Detention at Pretrial Hearing
Within 48 hours of an individual being placed in county jail, the court must hold a pretrial hearing. During that proceeding, the judge will take into account the risk information generated by the Public Safety Assessment, recommendations of release conditions by the Pretrial Services Program, and information presented by the prosecutor or defense.
After weighing all relevant factors, the judge will decide whether the individual be:
- Released on their own recognizance,
- Released on the least restrictive conditions,
- Released on bail, or
- Detained until trial
Put 20+ Years of Experience on Your Side
Because the judge will take your circumstances into consideration when deciding whether or not to release you from custody, you must be able to deliver a compelling case during your hearing. I am ready to provide focused legal representation in Parsippany and help present your side of the story to the judge to seek a favorable outcome on your behalf.Schedule a free consultation today by calling me at (973) 828-0009 or contacting me online.