Bail: A Release or Detention Decision-Making Mechanism in American Courts

Topics: Bail, Bail bondsman, United States Constitution Pages: 3 (1257 words) Published: March 18, 2013
What is bail? Bail is the most common release/detention decisions- making mechanism in American courts. Bail serves two purposes: (1) It helps ensure reappearance of the accused, and (2) It prevents unconvicted persons from suffering imprisonment unnecessarily. In the Eight Amendment states that excessive bail shall not be required, and it shall not have excessive finds. The Eight Amendment does not guarantee the opportunity for bail. The Bail Reform Act gave defendants this right to be released on a bail. A bail schedule has guidelines to a set price of bond to fit the defendant’s crime that will need to be paid before release. Although a bail bond has its costs and duties, I believe that bail allowing defendants in non violent, non serious crimes to be released until proven guilty is a good thing. To extend the opportunity for pretrial release to a greater proportion of non dangerous arrestees, a number of states and the federal government now make available various alternatives to cash bond system. Bail consists of many different personal bonds including (1) release on recognizance, (2) citation release, (3) exoneration of bail, (4) surety bond, (5) property bond, (6) immigration bond, and lastly (7) a cash bond. As for juveniles, they are not eligible for bail. The Bail Reform Act of 1966 gave non capital defendants a right where a constitutional right is lacking, to be released pending trial, on his personal recognizance or on personal bond, unless the judicial officer determines that such incentives will not adequately assure his apparent at trial. Individuals charged with a capital crime, or who have been convicted and are awaiting sentencing or appeals are to be released unless the judicial officers has reason to believe that the defendant opposes danger to the community or if the defendant might flee. There are bails that deal with different kinds of payments, and even some don’t need a payment at all, just a promise to appear in court. The first form...

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3. Schmalleger, Frank. Criminal Justice: A Brief Introduction. Boston, MA: Pearson Learning Solutions, 2010
5. "Bail." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 22 Oct. 2012. Web. 24 Oct. 2012. <>.
6. Thomas, Steven. "Differences Between Adult & Juvenile Criminals." Yahoo! Contributor Network. Yahoo, 23 Sept. 2006. Web. 20 Oct. 2012. <>.
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