Los Angeles Criminal Law Blog
     


What happens on the first day of court - at the arraignment? Will I have to go into custody?

Posted on: May 28, 2007 at 1:46 a.m.

Arraignment is the initial court proceeding where a defendant is advised of his charges, and usually enters a Not Guilty plea. If a defendant is out on bail, he stays out of custody unless the prosecutor demonstrates to the court that the defendant is a flight risk, or a danger to the community, above and beyond what the posted bail would prevent against. In other words, the prosecutor has to explain to the judge why the defendant needs to be rearrested when he has already voluntarily shown up to court, after posting bail. The prosecutor clearly has the burden here, and bail gets increased in cases where Defendant is on probation, there are new charges filed, or the source of bail (the monies used) are connected to illegal conduct.

Tagged as: bail and release, faq

Comments:

Tania Bakar on November 9, 2009 at 2:44 a.m. wrote:

The arraignment can basically be seen as the fist step. In California there are two stages to an arraignment. The first stage of the arraignment must happen within 24 hours of a persons arrest. Here the defendant is informed of the criminal complaint and the potential charges facing them. Furthermore, the amount of the bail is established by the presiding judge. In the second stage of the arraignment the defendant is able to enter plea, either stating that he is guilty or not guilty. In these initial steps there obviously is no jury. Here the defendant has the opportunity to acquire a public defense lawyer if he/she has not hired a private one.


Eric T. on June 7, 2007 at 1:13 a.m. wrote:

One of your constitutional 'due process' rights is the right to be told exactly what you're being accused of doing. That happens at an arraignment- the judge reads the charges filed against you and asks you if you understand what you've been accused of doing. If you haven't already hired an attorney to defend you, the judge will ask you if you want one. If you want one and you can't afford to pay for one, the judge will appoint an attorney to represent you for free - that's another one of your constitutional rights. The judge will ask you or your attorney how you plead to the charges - whether you admit them or not. If you plead 'guilty,' then you go on to sentencing, where the judge decides what will happen to you for breaking the law. If you plead 'not guilty,' your case will go to trial, where the prosecutor will have to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you did what they say you did. note information taken from: http://www.metrokc.gov/kcsc/kids/arraignment.htm









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