On occasion in the news, we hear of a person accused of a crime that is being held without bail. The U.S. Constitution provides for the right to bail – if this is so, how is bail sometimes denied? Bail is a complex process, so it is important to examine the many factors that contribute to deciding the amount of bail or if it will be allowed.
The Bail Process
Many factors surrounding the charges and the accused person are examined when a judge is setting bail. Denying bail is especially considered if the accused person will present a threat to the safety of the community if released on bail. Also highly considered is if the accused person is likely to flee to avoid appearing at trial.
Also examined are the accused person’s financial status, their family and community ties, past criminal history, drug and alcohol history, and the seriousness of the charges. Since bail is a promise to return for trial, many relevant qualities about the character of the accused person and their likelihood to return are examined.
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