In the first part of this article, we examined what happens at an Arraignment from the beginning, when a Defendant is advised of the Charge against him or her, and the Penalty that can be imposed for that Charge, as well as how the Court advises the Defendant of his or her Constitutional Rights, to how a Plea is entered. In this second part of the article we will examine the setting of Bond, the imposition of Bond Conditions, and how and why a Court will inform the Defendant of his or her next Court date. In an earlier Blog Post about Bond and getting out of Jail, we examined the Bond Process, particularly the money aspect in detail. Here, we'll examine the mechanics of the setting of Bond and Bond Conditions more than the money considerations we discussed in that earlier Blog article.
As a Criminal Defense Attorney, I have the opportunity to observe and participate in these proceedings from a slightly more detached position than my Client, who may well be too nervous to recall much, if any, of what happened, once they walk out of Court. As we proceed, we'll be using the example about the person arrested and taken to Jail for Possession of Marijuana in the City of Warren from the first part of this article.
Let's go back to that Possession of Marijuana example from the first part of this article. Remember, our imaginary Defendant was arrested in the City of Warren for Possession of Marijuana and has spent the night in Jail. Now, they've been brought to Court and before one of the Judges. After advising the Defendant of which Law he or she is charged with violating (in our example, either the City of Warren Ordinance or the State Law) and what the maximum possible penalty is for that violation, and after making sure the Defendant has been provided with either a verbal or written explanation of their Constitutional Rights, and that they understand them, and then entering a Plea on behalf of the Defendant (usually "Not Guilty," sometimes "Stands Mute,' and hopefully not, in any case, "Guilty"), the Judge looks to set Bond. The terms "Bond" and "Bail" have come to have similar meanings, which is an amount of money posted with a Court to get a Defendant out of Jail.
Let's take a detour from the example we've been discussing for a moment. Let's say that rather than having been arrested and spending the night in Jail for Possession of Marijuana, the person instead had their Marijuana confiscated and was issued a Citation (Ticket) instructing them to call the Court within 10 days from the date it was written. Or, let's say that the person was taken to the Police Station, booked, and then let out of Jail after posting an "interim Bond" of $100 or so, or just let go without posting any money, but, in either case, was still issued a Citation.