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American Bar Association Standards Relating to the Administration of Criminal Justice - Pretrial Release (From Operations of the Pretrial Services Agencies - Hearings, P 497-552, 1981 - See NCJ-87514)

NCJ Number
Date Published
56 pages
The American Bar Association standards for pretrial release favor the presumption that the defendant is entitled to release on recognizance, the issuing of citations in lieu of arrest or continued custody, the use of summons in lieu of an arrest warrant, and prompt arraignment after arrest.
As a general principle, the standards favor the release of defendants pending the determination of guilt or innocence, because detention pending trial is harsh and oppressive in subjecting persons whose guilt has not been judicially established to economic and psychological hardship; moreover, it interferes with their ability to defend themselves. It should be presumed that the defendant is entitled to release on recognizance, with this presumption being overcome by a finding that there is a substantial risk of nonappearance or a need for additional conditions of release. It should be the policy of every law enforcement agency to issue citations in lieu of arrest or continued custody to the maximum extent consistent with the effective enforcement of the law. This policy should be implemented by statutes of statewide applicability. Further, all judicial officers should be given statutory authority to issue a summons rather than an arrest warrant in all cases in which a complaint, information, or indictment is filed or returned against a person not already in custody. Unless the accused is released on citation or in some other lawful manner, the accused should be taken before a judicial officer without unnecessary delay. Except during nighttime hours, every accused should be presented no later than 6 hours after arrest. Under no circumstances should the accused's first appearance be delayed to conduct in-custody investigation. An accused not promptly presented shall be entitled to immediate release.