Previously we’ve discussed how bail bondsmen get their clients released from jail and what that process is like for defendants and their families. But is it always a matter of posting bail and then being allowed to walk free? Well, it depends on the situation. Under certain circumstances, judges do put further conditions on those released on bail.
What are some examples? Generally, when a judge sets further conditions, they are not monetary, but behavior related, and they are intended to make sure that the defendant poses no risk to himself or the community upon his release and that he will make an appearance in court on the appointed day. Any conditions set must be reasonable, and they must be in line with the seriousness of the offense. Of course, if the court has real doubts about the safety of releasing someone, it will deny bail entirely, and that person will remain in jail until trial. But most defendants are not deemed such a threat and will be given the opportunity to post bail, with or without these conditions:
- Maintain or seek employment
- Maintain or start an educational program
- Respect travel restrictions (this would include demands to surrender a passport or be on an electronic tether)
- Report to the police at specified times
- Reside at a certain address
- Respect curfew
- Obey all laws
- Have no weapons
- Have no contact with the victim and/or witnesses to the crime
- Do not use drugs or alcohol
If the defendant violates any of these conditions of bail, the judge may have his bail revoked and order him re-arrested and returned to jail. But remember, the bail process is designed to, first of all, maintain the rights of citizens to live their lives without the undue influence of the state and to prepare their defense before trial, and, secondly, to spare taxpayers the burden of monitoring and maintaining large numbers of accused individuals until those trial dates occur.
Much of the time, the amount of the bail itself will serve as enough incentive for the defendant to do his part and show up on the appointed court date for trial. In cases where the future actions of the defendant are not considered dangerous to the community but perhaps point to some degree of unpredictability, the court hedges its bets with the aforementioned conditions. If we at Michigan Bail Bonds can help you with the bail process of a friend or loved one or to understand what any potential outcomes of an arraignment are, feel free to contact us anytime. We are available 24/7 to help our clients negotiate the stressful period following an arrest.