What can happen at a bail review in Maryland? There are two factors the Courts consider when determining bail for a defendant:
Risk to Society, facts of the case and the risk to the public if the defendant is released; and
Flight risk, will the person that is pending charged return to Court?
What Can a Judge Do at a Bail Review
A Judge can make a number of decisions at a bail review in Maryland, including:
The Judge can keep the bail at the same level that was set by the commissioner when the defendant was originally seen.
The Judge can reduce the bail to a lower amount of money.
The Judge can keep the bail at the same amount and set a percentage that may be paid to be released. For an example, the Judge can set a bail at $100,000.00 but set it at 10% is acceptable, and this the Defendant can post $10,000.00 and will be released pending trial. If the defendant appears in Court, then that amount would be returned to the Defendant after the trial.
The Judge can increase the bail, making it higher than what was originally set.
The Judge can reinstate an original bail. This happens when a person fails to appear, but then shows for another hearing or a motion is filed, then the Judge can reinstate the original bail. This also is helpful if the defendant has already posted a bail, then they can be released on that prior posting.
The Judge can release the person on their own recognizance, this means let the defendant out without posting a bail. The Judge may impose some pretrial conditions, such as no contact with a witness or victim or stay away from a specific location or address.
The Judge can release a Defendant in the supervision of a specific person or facility. This may happen of the Defendant is in a recovery home or facility, the Judge can release that facility and that facility will notify the Judge if the Defendant stays in that location or leaves.
The Judge can releases a defendant with specific conditions imposed, such as complete a drug treatment program or seek a psychological examination pending trial.
The Judge can also keep the trial date as set by a commissioner or change the trial date at the bail review.
Some reasons a Judge may deny the Defendant release on their recognizance is:
Lack of family and employment ties to the jurisdiction.
Prior failure to appear in Court or prior flight to avoid prosecution.
The nature of the offense, weight of evidence against the defendant and possible sentence are such that sever risk of non-appearance exists.
Other reasons, including recommendations from the State’s Attorney’s Office, pre-trial recommendations, investigations ongoing, or another factor that the defendant will not appear in Court on the next trial date.
If you or a loved one has a bail review and you want to have a lawyer at the hearing, contact our office at 410.288.2900 and speak with a bail review lawyer today.