When a person is arrested on criminal charges, they may be detained under police custody for a time to await their arraignment or other hearings. This is heavily dependent on the circumstances of the crime they face charges for. If a defendant is to be held under police custody, while awaiting future hearings, a person may have a chance to be released on bail. Bail is the monetary amount paid to the court in exchange for a defendant's release prior to their day in court. A high bail amount can lead to difficulty with a defendant's ability to prepare their case, as they will be under police custody. If a person is arrested in Chester County, their bail may be negotiated at the Pretrial Services Division of the Chester County Court of Common Pleas.
Reducing Bail in Chester County
When a defendant wishes to reduce their bail amount, they must file a motion with the court in order to do so. A higher bail amount may cause a person to have to accrue debt or take out expensive bail bonds in order to help their case. When considering whether or not to reduce bail, the court will take the following into consideration:
- A defendant's "flight risk," or their likelihood of fleeing their case
- The crime the defendant has been charged with
- Any threat the defendant may pose to the community
These factors also often play a part in what the initial bail amount is set for.
Hearings to Reduce Bail in Chester County
A defendant has the ability to motion for the reduction of their bail from police custody. A successful filing is likely to result in a hearing in front of a judge, where a defendant must defend and argue their motion. Hearings will be attended by the defendant, the judge, and the prosecutor. Prosecutors will argue against the defendant's motion. After the arguments for and opposing the motion have been heard, the judge will make a decision on whether or not to grant the motion to reduce bail.
While these motions can be filed without an attorney, or through the services of a public defender, utilizing the services of a private attorney may increase the odds of a successful motion. Arguments to support motions such as this one often require dedication, time, and resources that a public defender may not be able to spare. A private attorney can take more time to personalize your case for arguing the motion in court. In addition to this, a private attorney gets a much greater perspective on your case the earlier on you choose to involve them.