Bail is the bond amount set by Police, Bail Staff or Judges to make sure that a person goes to court or returns to court if they are released after they have been arrested.2. When is Bail set?
- Police set a Bail amount at the time of arrest.
- By law police are required to notify Bail Staff when a defendant cannot make the bond amount set by the police.
- Bail Staff will then conduct an interview to get personal information from the defendant and review the bond amount set by police.
- Bail Staff can increase or decrease the amount set by police.
3. How is bail posted?
- In order to post a Bond a person can either post the full cash value or contact a licensed Bail Bondsman who may post a person’s bail for a fee.
- Bail may be posted at a Police department where a defendant is locked up, at a court house or at the prison in which the defendant is being held.
4. When does a person get their bail money back if it is posted all in cash?
- When a diversionary program is granted for the defendant.
- If the person is acquitted.
- If the complaint or information filed against the person is dismissed.
- When the person is sentenced by the court.
The role of CSSD-Bail Staff when someone is arrested and detained
5. How is Bail determined by CSSD-Bail Staff?
Bail Staff use specific factors to decide what type and how much bond should be posted. These factors are called “weighted release criteria” and they are required by State Statutes.
6. What are the weighted release criteria?
- The nature and circumstances of the offense
- The defendant’s record of previous convictions
- The defendant’s past record of appearance in court after being admitted to bail
- The defendant’s family ties
- The defendant’s employment record
- The defendant’s financial resources
- The defendant’s character and mental condition
- The defendant’s community ties
7. How does a person who is arrested know if they are entitled to be interviewed by Bail Staff during nights and weekends or when court is not in session?
Except in cases where a person is arrested on a warrant signed by a judge and the bond has already been set or denied by the judge, all arrested persons have the right to be interviewed about the terms and conditions of their release.
8. What is the Jail Re-interview Program?
It is a program to help pre-trial offenders who have not posted bond. As a result of a re-interview, the amount of the bond or the conditions of release may be changed. The Jail Re-interview Staff may also refer offenders for treatment.
Pre-trial Conditions of Release
9. What are some typical Conditions of Release?
The Bail Commissioner or Court may impose nonfinancial conditions of release, which may require that the arrested person do any of the following:
- Remain under the supervision of a designated person or organization;
- Comply with restrictions on the person’s travel, people they associate with or where they live;
- Not engage in specified activities, including the use or possession of a dangerous weapon, an intoxicant or controlled substance;
- Avoid all contact with an alleged victim of the crime and with a potential witness who may testify about the offense; or
- Satisfy any other condition that is reasonably necessary to assure that the person comes to court.
10. What happens if a person does not obey their conditions of release?
If a person does not obey their conditions of release, they can be charged with a new crime or their bond can be modified or revoked by the court and a new bond imposed.
11. Can a person leave the state if they post Bail?
Unless the Court or Bail Commissioner orders that the person stay in the State, that person may leave as long as they return in time to make their court appearances.
12. What happens if the person misses Court?
The Judge may order a failure to appear warrant for the person’s arrest or the Judge may order a Bail Commissioner’s Letter be issued that will be sent to the person with a new court date.
The person should contact their attorney or the Court and ask what to do.
Pre-trial Diversionary Programs
14. What is the Pretrial Alcohol Education Program?
- It is a program for those people charged with certain alcohol offenses.
- The program is meant for first time offenders although it may be used again if 10 years has passed since it was last used.
- If the program is successfully finished, the case is dismissed.
15. How does a person successfully finish the Alcohol Education Program?
To successfully finish the Alcohol Education Program offenders must complete 10 or 15 counseling sessions in an alcohol intervention program or successfully finish a substance abuse treatment program. Offenders must also complete any other conditions that the court may impose.
16. What is the Drug Education Program?
- It is a program for those people charged with certain drug offenses.
- A person is not eligible for the pretrial Drug Education Program if they have taken part in the Drug Education Program or the Community Service Labor Program before.
- If the program is successfully finished, the criminal charges are dismissed.
17. What is required for completion of the Drug Education Program?
- To successfully finish the Drug Education Program offenders must complete 10 or 15 counseling sessions in a drug intervention program or successfully finish a substance abuse treatment program of not less than 12 sessions.
- In addition to the education classes, offenders must perform community service and any other conditions that the court may order.
18. What is the School Violence Program?
It is a program for people charged with an offense involving the use or threatened use of physical violence in or on the property of a public or private elementary or secondary school or at a school-sponsored activity.
19. What is required to complete the School Violence Program?
The school violence program consists of at least 8 group counseling sessions in anger management and nonviolent conflict resolution. If the program is successfully finished, the criminal charges are dismissed.
SOURCE: CT Judicial Branch