Prior to January 2017, bail was set as a dollar amount, with the seriousness of the crime and other factors being taken into consideration. As of January 01, 2017, the New Jersey Bail Reform and Speedy Trial Act replaced the monetary bail system with a non-monetary risk assessment.
Under the new system, a judge will hold a Risk Assessment Hearing, and use a computerized risk assessment tool, that assesses a defendant’s behavior, type of alleged crime, criminal history, and their age. Based upon the information entered into the program, it will produce a risk score, designed to help the judge determine whether there is risk that (a) the defendant will skip their court date (b) the defendant will commit another crime or (c) the defendant will commit a violent crime.
At the time of the hearing, the prosecutor can present arguments for why bail should not be granted or why pretrial release is not warranted. If a prosecutor wants to argue for detainment and denial of bail the court will grant 72 hours to the State to hold a hearing on the issue of bail. During this hearing the prosecutor has the burden of proving why the defendant should be subject to pretrial dentition and denied bail. Your defense attorney can also appear at the hearing and argue why you should not be detained prior to trial.
I have over 25 years experience handling criminal matters, including hundreds of bail hearings. If you, a family member or friend have been charged with a crime, call my office for a free consultation. I'll explain the charges and how I can help.
All the Best!
RANDY C. REDDEN