What is an Arthur Hearing and How Can it Help Me Get Bail?

January 5, 2022 Criminal Defense

When a person has committed a crime, they are typically able to get released on bond, which allows them to be released from custody. Bail refers to the money a defendant has to pay in order to get released from custody. If bond is granted, it means that the person who pays would be liable if the person released from custody doesn’t return for the appointed time.

In Florida, many crimes are eligible for release on bond. In fact, almost everyone has a right to bail. There are certain offenses, however, where this is not an option. This usually occurs when a much harsher crime has been offended. Usually, release on bond is not applicable to someone charged with a life or capital offense, meaning life in prison or capital punishment. That individual would have to remain in custody until their trial.

With the right help, the defendant may be able to attend something called an Arthur Hearing. This is a hearing similar to a small, expedient trial that may end up granting the defendant bond even with more extreme cases. By reviewing what an Arthur Hearing is, along with what happens during it, defendant can be better prepared if a hearing were to ever occur in their case. With the right legal help, release from custody through bond, or an Arthur Hearing, can be a possibility.  

Finding a Defense Attorney in Tallahassee, Florida

When trying to figure out the ins and out of the legal world, the best way to start is by finding an experienced attorney in your area. High quality legal help can aid you in navigating the criminal judicial process, and can work towards securing an Arthur Hearing if there are issues with your bond. Early release from custody is essential for many defendants who would rather prepare for trial with the support and help of their loved ones, rather than in the confines of incarceration.

Don Pumphrey’s team at Pumphrey Law Firm are prepared to stand in your corner and fight for your freedom, and even get you out on bail. Call (850) 681-7777 for a free consultation today.

What is an Arthur Hearing?

When a person has been arrested for a crime in Florida for a “non-bondable” offense, they have the right to ask for an Arthur Hearing. A non-bondable offense is usually punishable by the maximum sentence of life in prison. Even if you are initially denied bond, a judge has the authority to grant an Arthur Hearing. The reason for the hearing is for a judge to determine whether or not the defendant should be released pending their trial.

To be granted a bond for a non-bondable offense, the defense attorney has to prove to the judge the following:

  • The charges placed on the defendant do not have significant enough evidence to prove them guilty.
  • The defendant does not pose a danger to society.

Friends and family are encouraged to attend these mini trials to help prove the two above factors to the judge. If the bond is granted, then the person is released from jail until their criminal trial. One thing to note is that you do not have to wait until the charges are formally filed to request an Arthur Hearing. The waiting time for charges to be formally filed can range from 20-40 days to be granted a bond. However, in the state of Florida, you can request an Arthur Hearing anytime after the arrest.

What Happens at an Arthur Hearing?

An Arthur Hearing in Florida is set to see if the defendant is eligible to be granted bond. During the hearing itself, there are two distinct parts: Phase One and Phase Two.

During Phase One, there is a mini trial held. Instead of a full jury, there is only one judge present. During this phase, the judge has to listen to and consider the testimony of the defendant. The prosecution has the burden of proof, meaning they have to show there is no question of the defendant’s guilt. The prosecutor has to prove the crime was committed by a showing of a “great presumption.”

During Phase Two, it has to be decided where a discretionary bond is appropriate. Such things for the court to consider include the defendant’s prior record, the seriousness of the crime, and whether or not the defendant poses as a flight risk or a danger to society.

If the judge believes the defendant is deserving of release from custody, he or she will set the bond amount. It is entirely in their discretion how much the bond will cost, and it is important to note that there is no restriction to the amount of the bond when it comes to capital felonies. With the help of a defense attorney, the bond amount issued by the judge may be able to be reduced.

What are the Benefits of Getting Out on Bond?

There are plenty of benefits of getting released on bond. For one, you won’t be stuck in a jail cell. You have the ability to work directly with your defense attorney rather than waiting for news behind bars. Working closely with your attorney can benefit your case by figuring out early the best possible defenses and preparations for the courtroom together.

There is also the benefit of first impressions in the courtroom. Getting released on bond means you can show up to court, preferably in a suit or nice outfit to show the judge and jury that you are a responsible adult. It is a much better appearance than showing up in an orange jumpsuit.

While in custody, you will have to miss days from work and find arrangements for your possessions, family, pets, etc. Getting released on bond would mean getting back to your normal life until your court date or being able to make arrangements in case you believe you will have to spend any time in jail.

What are Typical Non-Bondable Charges?

Capital Felonies are the highest classification for the more serious crimes that can be committed. For this reason, capital felonies are considered non-bondable offenses. The only instance that defendants charged with these types of crimes can receive bond is through an Arthur hearing. The following is a list of non-bondable charges:

Finding a Defense Attorney to help with an Arthur Hearing in Florida

Getting charged with a crime can be an extremely stressful experience. Doing it alone can make it that much more difficult, and you may not be able to get an Arthur Hearing. If you or a loved one has been charged with a crime, your first step should be reaching out to a skilled defense attorney. Receiving help from an attorney can help prove that you are eligible for an Arthur Hearing, and potentially bond out of custody.

Don Pumphrey and his team at Pumphrey Law Firm have worked with defendants before on receiving an Arthur Hearings. They understand the importance of proving that you or your loved one is not a flight risk or danger to society. Working with a skilled attorney can make the difference between being stuck in a jail cell or enjoying freedom before your court date. Call (850) 681-7777 today and receive a free consultation regarding your case. Enduring life behind bars is one of the worst possible experiences for a person, so it is best to not make it last any longer than it needs to.

This article was written by Karissa Key

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