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The Vermont Statutes Online

 

Title 13: Crimes and Criminal Procedure

Chapter 229: BAIL AND RECOGNIZANCES

  • § 7551. Imposition of bail, secured appearance bonds, and appearance bonds

    (a) Bonds; generally. A bond given by a person charged with a criminal offense or by a witness in a criminal prosecution under section 6605 of this title, conditioned for the appearance of the person or witness before the court in cases where the offense is punishable by fine or imprisonment, and in appealed cases, shall be taken to the Criminal Division of the Superior Court where the prosecution is pending and shall remain binding upon parties until discharged by the court or until sentencing. The person or witness shall appear at all required court proceedings.

    (b) Limitation on imposition of bail, secured appearance bonds, and appearance bonds.

    (1) Except as provided in subdivision (2) of this subsection, no bail, secured appearance bond, or appearance bond may be imposed:

    (A) at the initial appearance of a person charged with a misdemeanor if the person was cited for the offense in accordance with Rule 3 of the Vermont Rules of Criminal Procedure; or

    (B) at the initial appearance or upon the temporary release pursuant to Rule 5(b) of the Vermont Rules of Criminal Procedure of a person charged with a violation of a misdemeanor offense that is eligible for expungement pursuant to subdivision 7601(4)(A) of this title.

    (2) In the event the court finds that imposing bail is necessary to mitigate the risk of flight from prosecution for a person charged with a violation of a misdemeanor offense that is eligible for expungement pursuant to subdivision 7601(4)(A) of this title, the court may impose bail in a maximum amount of $200.00.

    (3) This subsection shall not be construed to restrict the court's ability to impose conditions on such persons to reasonably mitigate the risk of flight from prosecution or to reasonably protect the public in accordance with section 7554 of this title. (Amended 2001, No. 124 (Adj. Sess.), § 1, eff. June 5, 2002; amended 2017, No. 62, § 1; 2017, No. 164 (Adj. Sess.), § 1.)

  • § 7552. Repealed. 2001, No. 124 (Adj. Sess.), § 13, eff. June 5, 2002.

  • § 7553. Release in cases punishable by life imprisonment

    A person charged with an offense punishable by life imprisonment when the evidence of guilt is great may be held without bail. If the evidence of guilt is not great, the person shall be bailable in accordance with section 7554 of this title. (Added 1987, No. 102, § 1; amended 1993, No. 143 (Adj. Sess.), § 1.)

  • § 7553a. Acts of violence; denial of release on bail

    A person charged with an offense that is a felony, an element of which involves an act of violence against another person, may be held without bail when the evidence of guilt is great and the court finds, based upon clear and convincing evidence, that the person's release poses a substantial threat of physical violence to any person and that no condition or combination of conditions of release will reasonably prevent the physical violence. (Added 1993, No. 143 (Adj. Sess.), § 2.)

  • § 7553b. Right to speedy trial if bail is denied

    (a) Except in the case of an offense punishable by death or life imprisonment, if a person is held without bail prior to trial, the trial of the person shall be commenced not more than 60 days after bail is denied.

    (b) If the trial is not commenced within 60 days and the delay is not attributable to the defense, the court shall immediately schedule a bail hearing and shall set bail for the person. (Added 1993, No. 143 (Adj. Sess.), § 3.)

  • § 7554. Release prior to trial

    (a) Release; conditions of release. Any person charged with an offense, other than a person held without bail under section 7553 or 7553a of this title, shall at his or her appearance before a judicial officer be ordered released pending trial in accordance with this section.

    (1) The defendant shall be ordered released on personal recognizance or upon the execution of an unsecured appearance bond in an amount specified by the judicial officer unless the judicial officer determines that such a release will not reasonably mitigate the risk of flight from prosecution as required. In determining whether the defendant presents a risk of flight from prosecution, the judicial officer shall consider, in addition to any other factors, the seriousness of the offense charged and the number of offenses with which the person is charged. If the officer determines that the defendant presents a risk of flight from prosecution, the officer shall, either in lieu of or in addition to the methods of release in this section, impose the least restrictive of the following conditions or the least restrictive combination of the following conditions that will reasonably mitigate the risk of flight of the defendant as required:

    (A) Place the defendant in the custody of a designated person or organization agreeing to supervise him or her if the defendant is charged with an offense that is not a nonviolent misdemeanor or nonviolent felony as defined in 28 V.S.A. § 301.

    (B) Place restrictions on the travel or association of the defendant during the period of release.

    (C) Require the defendant to participate in an alcohol or drug treatment program. The judicial officer shall take into consideration the defendant's ability to comply with an order of treatment and the availability of treatment resources.

    (D) Upon consideration of the defendant's financial means, require the execution of a secured appearance bond in a specified amount and the deposit with the clerk of the court, in cash or other security as directed, of a sum not to exceed 10 percent of the amount of the bond, such deposit to be returned upon the appearance of the defendant as required.

    (E) Upon consideration of the defendant's financial means, require the execution of a surety bond with sufficient solvent sureties, or the deposit of cash in lieu thereof.

    (F) Impose any other condition found reasonably necessary to mitigate the risk of flight as required, including a condition requiring that the defendant return to custody after specified hours.

    (G) Place the defendant in a program of community-based electronic monitoring in accordance with section 7554d of this title.

    (2) If the judicial officer determines that conditions of release imposed to mitigate the risk of flight will not reasonably protect the public, the judicial officer may impose in addition the least restrictive of the following conditions or the least restrictive combination of the following conditions that will reasonably ensure protection of the public:

    (A) Place the defendant in the custody of a designated person or organization agreeing to supervise him or her if the defendant is charged with an offense that is not a nonviolent misdemeanor or nonviolent felony as defined in 28 V.S.A. § 301.

    (B) Place restrictions on the travel, association, or place of abode of the defendant during the period of release.

    (C) Require the defendant to participate in an alcohol or drug treatment program. The judicial officer shall take into consideration the defendant's ability to comply with an order of treatment and the availability of treatment resources.

    (D) Impose any other condition found reasonably necessary to protect the public, except that a physically restrictive condition may only be imposed in extraordinary circumstances.

    (E) Suspend the officer's duties in whole or in part if the defendant is a State, county, or municipal officer charged with violating section 2537 of this title and the court finds that it is necessary to protect the public.

    (F) Place the defendant in a program of community-based electronic monitoring in accordance with section 7554d of this title.

    (3) A judicial officer may order that a defendant not harass or contact or cause to be harassed or contacted a victim or potential witness. This order shall take effect immediately, regardless of whether the defendant is incarcerated or released.

    (b) Judicial considerations in imposing conditions of release. In determining which conditions of release to impose:

    (1) In subdivision (a)(1) of this section, the judicial officer, on the basis of available information, shall take into account the nature and circumstances of the offense charged; the weight of the evidence against the accused; the accused's employment; financial resources, including the accused's ability to post bail; the accused's character and mental condition; the accused's length of residence in the community; and the accused's record of appearance at court proceedings or of flight to avoid prosecution or failure to appear at court proceedings.

    (2) In subdivision (a)(2) of this section, the judicial officer, on the basis of available information, shall take into account the nature and circumstances of the offense charged; the weight of the evidence against the accused; and the accused's family ties, employment, character and mental condition, length of residence in the community, record of convictions, and record of appearance at court proceedings or of flight to avoid prosecution or failure to appear at court proceedings. Recent history of actual violence or threats of violence may be considered by the judicial officer as bearing on the character and mental condition of the accused.

    (c) Order. A judicial officer authorizing the release of a person under this section shall issue an appropriate order containing a statement of the conditions imposed, if any; shall inform such person of the penalties applicable to violations of the conditions of release; and shall advise him or her that a warrant for his or her arrest will be issued immediately upon any such violation.

    (d) Review of conditions.

    (1) A person for whom conditions of release are imposed and who is detained as a result of his or her inability to meet the conditions of release or who is ordered released on a condition that he or she return to custody after specified hours, or the State, following a material change in circumstances, shall, within 48 hours following application, be entitled to have the conditions reviewed by a judge in the court having original jurisdiction over the offense charged. A party applying for review shall be given the opportunity for a hearing. Unless the conditions of release are amended as requested, the judge shall set forth in writing or orally on the record a reasonable basis for continuing the conditions imposed. In the event that a judge in the court having original jurisdiction over the offense charged is not available, any Superior judge may review such conditions.

    (2) A person for whom conditions of release are imposed shall, within five working days following application, be entitled to have the conditions reviewed by a judge in the court having original jurisdiction over the offense charged. A person applying for review shall be given the opportunity for a hearing. Unless the conditions of release are amended as requested, the judge shall set forth in writing or orally on the record a reasonable basis for continuing the conditions imposed. In the event that a judge in the court having original jurisdiction over the offense charged is not available, any Superior judge may review such conditions.

    (e) Amendment of order. A judicial officer ordering the release of a person on any condition specified in this section may at any time amend the order to impose additional or different conditions of release, provided that the provisions of subsection (d) of this section shall apply.

    (f) Definition. The term "judicial officer" as used in this section and section 7556 of this title shall mean a clerk of a Superior Court or a Superior Court judge.

    (g) Admissibility of evidence. Information stated in, or offered in connection with, any order entered pursuant to this section need not conform to the rules pertaining to the admissibility of evidence in a court of law.

    (h) Forfeiture. Nothing contained in this section shall be construed to prevent the disposition of any case or class of cases by forfeiture of collateral security if such disposition is authorized by the court.

    (i) Forms. The Court Administrator shall establish forms for appearance bonds, secured appearance bonds, surety bonds, and for use in the posting of bail. Each form shall include the following information:

    (1) The bond or bail may be forfeited in the event that the defendant or witness fails to appear at any required court proceeding.

    (2) The surety or person posting bond or bail has the right to be released from the obligations under the bond or bail agreement upon written application to the judicial officer and detention of the defendant or witness.

    (3) The bond will continue through sentencing in the event that bail is continued after final adjudication.

    (j) Juveniles. Any juvenile between 14 and 16 years of age who is charged with a listed crime as defined in subdivision 5301(7) of this title shall appear before a judicial officer and be ordered released pending trial in accordance with this section within 24 hours following the juvenile's arrest. (Added 1967, No. 337 (Adj. Sess.), § 4; amended 1969, No. 125, § 12; 1973, No. 193 (Adj. Sess.), § 3, eff. April 9, 1974; 1987, No. 102, § 2; 1989, No. 293 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; 1993, No. 143 (Adj. Sess.), § 4; 2001, No. 124 (Adj. Sess.), § 2, eff. June 5, 2002; 2003, No. 73 (Adj. Sess.), § 6, eff. March 1, 2004; 2005, No. 63, § 10; 2005, No. 193 (Adj. Sess.), § 10; 2007, No. 108 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; 2007, No. 169 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; 2009, No. 154 (Adj. Sess.), § 118; 2015, No. 43, § 2; 2015, No. 125 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; 2015, No. 153 (Adj. Sess.), § 18; 2017, No. 164 (Adj. Sess.), § 3.)

  • § 7554a. Approval of fidelity companies and agents; duty of Court Administrator

    The Court Administrator, after consultation with the Commissioner of Financial Regulation, may approve an entity that is licensed or authorized under the provisions of 8 V.S.A. chapter 111, and any agent who is licensed under the provisions of 8 V.S.A. chapter 131, to act as a surety, or on behalf of a surety, in this State to execute a bond in the form established by the Court Administrator under subsection 7554(i) of this title, or post bail as required as a condition of release, and if so approved, the entity or agent shall not need to be approved by any court, judicial officer, or any other person. (Added 1993, No. 233 (Adj. Sess.), § 83, eff. June 21, 1994; amended 1995, No. 180 (Adj. Sess.), § 38(a); 2001, No. 124 (Adj. Sess.), § 3, eff. June 5, 2002; 2011, No. 78 (Adj. Sess.), § 2, eff. April 2, 2012.)

  • § 7554b. Home detention program

    (a) Definition. As used in this section, "home detention" means a program of confinement and supervision that restricts a defendant to a preapproved residence continuously, except for authorized absences, and is enforced by appropriate means of surveillance and electronic monitoring by the Department of Corrections. The court may authorize scheduled absences such as for work, school, or treatment. Any changes in the schedule shall be solely at the discretion of the Department of Corrections. A defendant who is on home detention shall remain in the custody of the Commissioner of Corrections with conditions set by the court.

    (b) Procedure. At the request of the court, the Department of Corrections, or the defendant, the status of a defendant who is detained pretrial in a correctional facility for inability to pay bail after bail has been set by the court may be reviewed by the court to determine whether the defendant is appropriate for home detention. The review shall be scheduled upon the court's receipt of a report from the Department determining that the proposed residence is suitable for the use of electronic monitoring. A defendant held without bail pursuant to section 7553 or 7553a of this title shall not be eligible for release to the Home Detention Program on or after June 1, 2018. At arraignment or after a hearing, the court may order that the defendant be released to the Home Detention Program, provided that the court finds placing the defendant on home detention will reasonably assure his or her appearance in court when required and the proposed residence is appropriate for home detention. In making such a determination, the court shall consider:

    (1) the nature of the offense with which the defendant is charged;

    (2) the defendant's prior convictions, history of violence, medical and mental health needs, history of supervision, and risk of flight; and

    (3) any risk or undue burden to other persons who reside at the proposed residence or risk to third parties or to public safety that may result from such placement.

    (c) Failure to comply. The Department of Corrections may revoke a defendant's home detention status for an unauthorized absence or failure to comply with any other condition of the Program and shall return the defendant to a correctional facility.

    (d) Credit for time served. A defendant shall receive credit for a sentence of imprisonment for time served in the Home Detention Program. (Added 2009, No. 146 (Adj. Sess.), § D4; amended 2017, No. 62, § 11; 2017, No. 164 (Adj. Sess.), § 7.)

  • § 7554c. Pretrial risk assessments; needs screenings

    (a)(1) The objective of a pretrial needs screening is to obtain a preliminary indication of whether a person has a substantial substance abuse or mental health issue that would warrant a subsequent court order for a more detailed clinical assessment.

    (2) Participation in a needs screening pursuant to this section does not create any entitlement for the screened person.

    (b)(1) Except as provided in subdivision (2) of this subsection, a judge may request that a pretrial services coordinator perform a risk assessment that assesses risk of flight for a person who is arrested, lodged, and unable to post bail within 24 hours of lodging.

    (2) A person charged with an offense for which registration as a sex offender is required pursuant to chapter 167, subchapter 3 of this title or an offense punishable by a term of life imprisonment shall not be eligible under this section.

    (3) Participation in risk assessment or needs screening shall be voluntary and a person's refusal to participate shall not result in any criminal legal liability to the person.

    (4) In the event a screening cannot be obtained prior to arraignment, the needs screening shall be conducted as soon as practicable.

    (5) A person who qualifies pursuant to subdivision (1) of this subsection and who has an additional pending charge or a violation of probation shall not be excluded from being offered a needs screening unless the other charge is a listed crime.

    (6) Any person charged with a criminal offense, a person who is the subject of a youthful offender petition pursuant to 33 V.S.A. § 5280, or a person 18 years of age or older who is the subject of a delinquency petition pursuant to 33 V.S.A. § 5201, except those persons identified in subdivision (2) of this subsection, may choose to engage with a pretrial services coordinator.

    (c) The results of the risk assessment and needs screening shall be provided to the person and his or her attorney, the prosecutor, and the court. Pretrial services coordinators may share information only within the limitations of subsection (e) of this section.

    (d)(1) At arraignment, the court may order a person who is eligible to engage with a pretrial services coordinator under subdivision (b)(6) of this section to do the following:

    (A) meet with a pretrial services coordinator on a schedule set by the court;

    (B) participate in a needs screening with a pretrial services coordinator; and

    (C) participate in a clinical assessment by a substance abuse or mental health treatment provider and follow the recommendations of the provider.

    (2) The court may order the person to engage in pretrial services. Pretrial services may include the pretrial services coordinator:

    (A) supporting the person in meeting conditions of release imposed by the court, including the condition to appear for judicial proceedings; and

    (B) connecting the person with community-based treatment programs, rehabilitative services, recovery supports, and restorative justice programs.

    (3) If possible, the court shall set the date and time for the clinical assessment at arraignment. In the alternative, the pretrial services coordinator shall coordinate the date, time, and location of the clinical assessment and advise the court, the person and his or her attorney, and the prosecutor.

    (4) An order authorized in subdivision (1) or (2) of this subsection shall be in addition to any conditions of release permitted by law and shall not limit the court in any way. Failure to comply with a court order authorized by subdivision (1) or (2) of this subsection shall not constitute a violation of section 7559 of this title.

    (5) This section shall not be construed to limit a court's authority to impose conditions pursuant to section 7554 of this title.

    (e)(1) Information obtained from the person during the risk assessment or needs screening shall be exempt from public inspection and copying under the Public Records Act and, except as provided in subdivision (2) of this subsection, only may be used for determining bail, conditions of release, and appropriate programming for the person in the pending case. The information a pretrial services coordinator may report is limited to whether a risk assessment indicates risk of nonappearance, whether further substance use assessment or treatment is indicated, whether mental health assessment or treatment is indicated, whether a person participated in a clinical assessment, and whether further engagement with pretrial services is recommended, unless the person provides written permission to release additional information. Information related to the present offense directly or indirectly derived from the risk assessment, needs screening, or other conversation with the pretrial services coordinator shall not be used against the person in the person's criminal or juvenile case for any purpose, including impeachment or cross-examination. However, the fact of participation or nonparticipation in risk assessment or needs screening may be used in subsequent proceedings. The immunity provisions of this subsection apply only to the use and derivative use of information gained as a proximate result of the risk assessment, needs screening, or other conversation with the pretrial services coordinator.

    (2) The person shall retain all of his or her due process rights throughout the risk assessment and needs screening process and may release his or her records at his or her discretion.

    (3) All records of information obtained during risk assessment or needs screening shall be stored in a manner making them accessible only to the Director of Pretrial Services and pretrial service coordinators for a period of three years, after which the records shall be maintained as required by sections 117 and 218 of this title and any other State law. The Director of Pretrial Services shall be responsible for the destruction of records when ordered by the court.

    (f) The Attorney General's Office shall:

    (1) contract for or otherwise provide the pretrial services described in this section, including performance of risk assessments, needs screenings, and pretrial monitoring services, and

    (2) develop pretrial services outcomes following the designated State of Vermont performance accountability framework and, in consultation with the Department of State's Attorneys and Sheriffs, the Office of the Defender General, the Center for Crime Victim Services, and the Judiciary, report annually on or before December 1 to the General Assembly on services provided and outcome indicators. (Added 2013, No. 179 (Adj. Sess.), § E.339.1; 2013, No. 195 (Adj. Sess.), § 2, eff. Jan. 1, 2015; amended 2015, No. 12, § 2, eff. May 1, 2015; 2015, No. 140 (Adj. Sess.), § 1, eff. May 25, 2016; 2017, No. 61, § 3; 2019, No. 77, § 19, eff. June 19, 2019; 2021, No. 14, § 1, eff. April 29, 2021.)

  • § 7554d. Electronic Monitoring Pilot Program

    (a)(1) The Windham County Sheriff's Office (WCSO) shall establish and manage a two-year electronic monitoring pilot program in Windham County for the purpose of supervising persons ordered to be under electronic monitoring as a condition of release or in addition to or in lieu of the imposition of bail pursuant to section 7554 of this title. The program shall be a part of an integrated community incarceration program and shall provide 24-hours-a-day, seven-days-a-week electronic monitoring with supervision and immediate response.

    (2) For purposes of this program, if electronic monitoring is ordered by the court pursuant to section 7554 of this title, the court shall use the following criteria for determining whether electronic monitoring is appropriate:

    (A) the nature of the offense with which the defendant is charged;

    (B) the defendant's prior convictions, history of violence, medical and mental health needs, history of supervision, and risk of flight; and

    (C) any risk or undue burden to other persons who reside at the proposed residence or risk to third parties or to public safety that may result from the placement.

    (3) The WCSO shall establish written policies and procedures for the electronic monitoring program, shall provide progress reports on the development of the policies and procedures to the Justice Oversight Committee, and shall submit the final policies and procedures to the Committee for approval on or before June 30, 2016.

    (b) The goal of the pilot program is to assist policymakers in determining whether electronically monitored home detention and home confinement can be utilized for pretrial detention and as a post-adjudication option to reduce recidivism, to improve public safety, and to save valuable bed space for detainees and inmates who, without an electronic monitoring program, would otherwise be lodged in a correctional facility. Additional benefits may include reducing transportation costs, increasing detainee access to services, reducing case resolution time, and determining if the program can be replicated statewide.

    (c) The WCSO shall work with the Crime Research Group (CRG) for design and evaluation assistance. The program shall be evaluated by CRG to determine if the stated goals have been attained, the cost and savings of the program, identifying what goals or objective were not met and if not, what could be changed to meet the goals and objectives to ensure program success. The Joint Fiscal Office shall contract with the CRG to provide design and evaluation services.

    (d)(1) The WCSO is authorized to enter into written agreements with the sheriffs of other counties permitting those counties to participate in the pilot program subject to the policies and procedures established by the WCSO under this section. At least one of the agreements shall be between the WCSO and a county with a significant population.

    (2) The purpose of expanding the electronic monitoring program to other counties under this subsection is to increase the number of participants to a level sufficient to permit evaluation of whether the program is meeting the bed savings and other goals identified in subsection (b) of this section.

    (e) The Department of Corrections shall enter into a memorandum of understanding with the Department of State's Attorneys and Sheriffs for oversight and funding of the electronic monitoring program established by this section. The memorandum shall establish processes for:

    (1) transmitting funding for the electronic monitoring program from the Department of Corrections to the Department of State's Attorneys and Sheriffs for purposes of allocation to the sheriff's departments participating in the program; and

    (2) maintaining oversight of the electronic monitoring program to ensure that it complies with the requirements of this section and the policies and procedures established by the WCSO pursuant to subdivision (a)(3) of this section.

    (f) The pilot program shall be in effect from July 1, 2014 through June 30, 2018. (Added 2013, No. 179 (Adj. Sess.), § E.339.1; amended 2015, No. 125 (Adj. Sess.), § 2, eff. May 23, 2016.)

  • § 7555. Repealed. 1967, No. 337 (Adj. Sess.), § 6.

  • § 7555a. Legislative findings

    The General Assembly finds:

    (1) During the 1991-2 and the 1993-4 sessions, the General Assembly adopted Proposal 7, which proposed to amend section 40 of Chapter II of the Vermont Constitution to allow a judge to order a person charged with a felony involving an act of violence to be held without bail when the evidence of guilt is great and the court finds by clear and convincing evidence

    (A) that the person's release poses a substantial threat of physical violence to any person; and

    (B) that no condition of release will reasonably prevent the physical violence.

    (2) On November 8, 1994, the voters of the State of Vermont approved Proposal 7.

    (3) On December 13, 1994, the Governor certified the amendment thereby making it effective on that date.

    (4) As amended, section 40 of Chapter II of the Vermont Constitution provides that if a judge orders a person held without bail, that person is entitled to a review de novo by a single Justice of the Supreme Court forthwith.

    (5) Given the unique nature of the trial court hearing which can result in the accused being denied bail, in passing Proposal 7, and its enabling legislation, H.589, the General Assembly intended to provide the accused with a second evidentiary hearing by a single Justice without regard to the record compiled before the trial court. However, in the case of State v. Madison, No. 95-046 (1995), the Vermont Supreme Court held that the term "review de novo" as it is used in section 40 of Chapter II of the Vermont Constitution and in H.589 does not require the single Justice to conduct a second evidentiary hearing and that the Legislature should have used the term "hearing de novo" if it intended a second, independent evidentiary hearing.

    (6) Proposal 7 substantially increased the court's authority prior to trial and conviction to incarcerate persons accused of certain offenses. It was the intent of the General Assembly to balance this increased judicial authority with increased due process for the accused person. That increased due process was intended to be in the form of a new and independent evidentiary hearing.

    (7) In certain respects, the Vermont Constitution is not a grant of power to the Legislature, but is a limitation on its general powers. Section 40(2) of Chapter II establishes the minimum required due process for an accused, but the General Assembly may require greater due process.

    (8) It was the clear and unequivocal intent of the General Assembly that a person who is denied bail and is incarcerated prior to trial under the authority of section 40(2) of Chapter II be entitled to a second full evidentiary hearing by a single Justice.

    (9) In order to implement the intent of the General Assembly, subsection 7556(d) of this title is amended to make it clear and unequivocal that a person who is denied bail under the authority of section 40(2) of Chapter II is entitled to a second full evidentiary hearing by a single Justice. Such a hearing is intended to be in addition to but not in conflict with the constitutionally required minimum due process established by Proposal 7. (Added 1995, No. 170 (Adj. Sess.), § 24a, eff. May 15, 1996.)

  • § 7556. Appeal from conditions of release

    (a) A person who is detained, or whose release on a condition requiring him or her to return to custody after specified hours is continued, after review of his or her application pursuant to subsection 7554(d) or (e) of this title by a judicial officer, other than a judge of the court having original jurisdiction over the offense with which he or she is charged or a Justice of the Supreme Court, may move the court having original jurisdiction over the offense with which he or she is charged to amend the order. The motion shall be determined promptly.

    (b) When a person is detained after a court denies a motion under subsection (a) of this section or when conditions of release have been imposed or amended by the judge of the court having original jurisdiction over the offense charged, an appeal may be taken to a single Justice of the Supreme Court who may hear the matter or at his or her discretion refer it to the entire Supreme Court for hearing. No further appeal may lie from the ruling of a single Justice in matters to which this subsection applies. Any order so appealed shall be affirmed if it is supported by the proceedings below. If the order is not supported, the Supreme Court or single Justice hearing the matter may remand the case for a further hearing or may, with or without additional evidence, order the person released. The appeal shall be determined forthwith.

    (c) When a person is released, with or without bail or other conditions of release, an appeal may be taken by the State to a single Justice of the Supreme Court who may hear the matter or at his or her discretion refer it to the entire Supreme Court for hearing. No further appeal may lie from the ruling of a single Justice in matters to which this subsection applies. Any order so appealed shall be affirmed if it is supported by the proceedings below. If the order is not supported, the Supreme Court or single Justice hearing the matter may remand the case for a further hearing or may, with or without additional evidence, modify or vacate the order. The appeal shall be determined forthwith.

    (d) A person held without bail under section 7553a of this title prior to trial shall be entitled to an independent, second evidentiary hearing on the merits of the denial of bail, which shall be a hearing de novo by a single Justice of the Supreme Court forthwith. Pursuant to 4 V.S.A. § 22 the Chief Justice may appoint and assign a retired justice or judge with his or her consent or a Superior judge or District judge to a special assignment on the Supreme Court to conduct that de novo hearing. Such hearing de novo shall be an entirely new evidentiary hearing without regard to the record compiled before the trial court; except, the parties may stipulate to the admission of portions of the trial court record.

    (e) A person held without bail prior to trial shall be entitled to review of that determination by a panel of three Supreme Court Justices within seven business days after bail is denied. (Added 1967, No. 337 (Adj. Sess.), § 5; amended 1977, No. 235 (Adj. Sess.), § 7; 1981, No. 223 (Adj. Sess.), § 14; 1993, No. 143 (Adj. Sess.), § 5; 1995, No. 170 (Adj. Sess.), § 24b, eff. May 15, 1996; 2017, No. 11, § 31.)

  • § 7557. Bail upon postponement of trial

    When a District or Superior court postpones the trial of a criminal case or the examination of a person charged with a criminal offense, the court may impose the least restrictive conditions or combination of conditions permitted under subdivision 7554(a)(1) of this title which will reasonably assure the person's appearance before the court on the day to which the trial or examination is postponed. (Amended 1965, No. 194, § 10, operative February 1, 1967; 1973, No. 249 (Adj. Sess.), § 59, eff. April 9, 1974; 2001, No. 124 (Adj. Sess.), § 4, eff. June 5, 2002.)

  • § 7558. Repealed. 1973, No. 118, § 25, eff. Oct. 1, 1973.

  • § 7559. Release; designation; sanctions

    (a) The officer in charge of a facility under the control of the department of corrections, county jail or a local lockup shall discharge any person held by him or her upon receipt of an order for release issued by a judicial officer pursuant to section 7554 of this title, accompanied by the full amount of any bond or cash bail fixed by the judicial officer. The officer in charge, or a person designated by the Court Administrator, shall issue a receipt for such bond or cash bail, and shall account for and turn over such bond or cash bail to the court having jurisdiction.

    (b) The Court Administrator shall designate persons to set bail for any person under arrest prior to arraignment when the offense charged provides for a penalty of less than two years imprisonment or a fine of less than $1,000.00 or both. Such persons designated by the Court Administrator shall be considered judicial officers for the purposes of sections 7554 and 7556 of this title.

    (c) Any person who is designated by the Court Administrator under subsection (b) of this section, may refuse the designation by so notifying the Court Administrator in writing within seven days of the designation.

    (d) A person who has been released pursuant to section 7554 of this title with or without bail on condition that he or she appear at a specified time and place in connection with a prosecution for an offense and who without just cause fails to appear shall be imprisoned not more than two years or fined not more than  $5,000.00, or both.

    (e) The State's Attorney may commence a prosecution for criminal contempt under Rule 42 of the Vermont Rules of Criminal Procedure against a person who violates a condition of release imposed under section 7554 of this title. The maximum penalty that may be imposed under this subsection shall be a fine of $1,000.00 or imprisonment for six months, or both. Upon commencement of a prosecution for criminal contempt, the court shall review, in accordance with section 7554 of this title, and may continue or modify conditions of release or terminate release of the person.

    (f) Notwithstanding Rule 3 of the Vermont Rules of Criminal Procedure, a law enforcement officer may arrest a person without a warrant when the officer has probable cause to believe the person without just cause has failed to appear at a specified time and place in connection with a prosecution for an offense or has violated a condition of release relating to a restriction on travel or a condition of release that he or she not directly contact, harass, or cause to be harassed a victim or potential witness. (Amended 1971, No. 99; 1973, No. 118, § 21, eff. Oct. 1, 1973; 1971, No. 99; 1973, No. 118, § 21, eff. Oct. 1, 1973; 1973, No. 249 (Adj. Sess.), § 60, eff. April 9, 1974; 1981, No. 223 (Adj. Sess.), § 15; 1987, No. 102, § 3.)

  • § 7560. Repealed. 2001, No. 124 (Adj. Sess.), § 13, eff. June 5, 2002.

  • § 7560a. Failure to appear; forfeiture of bond; proceedings

    (a) If a person who has been released on a secured or unsecured appearance bond or a surety bond fails to appear in court as required:

    (1) The court may:

    (A) issue a warrant for the arrest of the person; and

    (B) upon hearing and notice thereof to the bailor or surety, forfeit any bail posted on the person.

    (2)(A) The State's Attorney may file a motion to forfeit the amount of the bond against the surety in the Civil or Criminal Division of the Superior Court where the bond was executed.

    (B) A motion filed under this subdivision shall:

    (i) include a copy of the bond;

    (ii) state the facts upon which the motion is based; and

    (iii) be served upon the surety.

    (b) The surety may respond to a motion to forfeit a bond. Responses must be served within 14 days of service of the motion.

    (c) Upon notice to the parties, the court shall schedule a hearing on a motion to forfeit a bond. The court shall order the surety to produce the principal at the hearing.

    (d) If the court finds that the surety has violated the terms of the bond by failing to produce the principal at the hearing or at any other court appearance at which the principal was required to appear, the court shall grant the motion to forfeit the bond. The court may, on motion, or on its own motion, adjust the amount of the forfeiture and order the forfeiture of all or part of the bond amount to the State.

    (e) If a surety fails to comply with a forfeiture order issued under subsection (d) of this section, the Attorney General may commence proceedings to enforce the order and collect the forfeited amount.

    (f) No bond may be forfeited, in whole or in part, for violation of any condition of release other than a condition that the principal appear in court as required.

    (g)(1) Service and filing under this section shall be pursuant to Rule 49 of the Vermont Rules of Criminal Procedure.

    (2) Computation of time under this section shall be pursuant to Rule 45 of the Vermont Rules of Criminal Procedure. (Added 2001, No. 124 (Adj. Sess.), § 5, eff. June 5, 2002; amended 2009, No. 154 (Adj. Sess.), § 119; 2017, No. 11, § 32.)

  • § 7561. Repealed. 1973, No. 118, § 25, eff. Oct. 1, 1973.

  • § 7562. Relief of bail- warrant to arrest and commit

    If a surety or a person who has posted bail wishes to surrender the principal in discharge of the person's obligations under the bond or bail agreement, the person may apply in writing to a judicial officer, as defined in subsection 7554(f) of this title, for a warrant to apprehend and detain the principal. The court shall, absent good cause shown, thereupon issue such warrant, and on detention of the principal, the person's obligation under the bond or bail agreement shall be discharged. (Amended 2001, No. 124 (Adj. Sess.), § 6, eff. June 5, 2002.)

  • § 7563. Execution of warrant; expenses

    (a) On receipt of a warrant issued under section 7562 of this title with respect to a person charged with a criminal offense, and tender of fees provided for by law, an officer shall apprehend and detain the defendant, and leave with the officer in charge of the facility a copy of the warrant, with his or her return thereon. The expense of arrest and transport of the defendant to the facility shall be paid by the person applying for the warrant.

    (b) On receipt of a warrant issued under section 7562 of this title with respect to a witness in a criminal prosecution, and tender of fees provided for by law, an officer shall apprehend the witness and deliver him or her to the court for disposition. (Amended 2001, No. 124 (Adj. Sess.), § 7, eff. June 5, 2002.)

  • § 7564. Fees

    Fees for the arrest and detention shall be the same as for the service of other process. If there is dispute about the amount of fees, it shall be submitted to the court which issued the warrant, and its decision shall be final. (Amended 2001, No. 124 (Adj. Sess.), § 8, eff. June 5, 2002.)

  • §§ 7565-7569. Repealed. 2001, No. 124 (Adj. Sess.), § 13, eff. June 5, 2002.

  • § 7570. Power of court to return forfeited security

    A surety may file a motion requesting the return of forfeited bail, bond or any other security at any time after the order of forfeiture is entered. The court shall set the motion for hearing and provide notice thereof to the surety and the state's attorney. If the court finds the interests of justice would be served by returning all or part of the security, the court may grant the motion and return as much of the security as it deems equitable under the circumstances. (Amended 2001, No. 124 (Adj. Sess.), § 9, eff. June 5, 2002.)

  • §§ 7571, 7572. Repealed. 2001, No. 124 (Adj. Sess.), § 13, eff. June 5, 2002.

  • § 7573. Peace bonds

    The Criminal Division of the Superior Court may order a person who is arrested for a criminal offense to find sureties that he or she will keep the peace, when it is necessary, and may order the person detained until he or she complies. The Court Administrator shall establish a form for peace bonds that includes notification that the surety has the right to be released from the obligations under the bond upon written application to the judicial officer and detention of the defendant. (Amended 1965, No. 194, § 10, operative February 1, 1967; 1973, No. 249 (Adj. Sess.), § 63, eff. April 9, 1974; 2001, No. 124 (Adj. Sess.), § 10, eff. June 5, 2002; 2009, No. 154, § 238.)

  • § 7574. Release in cases after conviction

    Upon an adjudication of guilt, the trial judge shall review the terms and conditions of release and may terminate them or may continue or alter them pending sentence or pending notice of appeal or the expiration of the time allowed for filing notice of appeal. In making such review, the judge shall consider the factors set forth in subsection 7554(b) of this title, as well as the defendant's conduct during the trial and the fact of conviction. Any denial of or change in the terms of release shall be reviewable in the manner provided in sections 7554 and 7556 of this title for pretrial release. (Added 1987, No. 102, § 4.)

  • § 7575. Revocation of the right to bail

    The right to bail may be revoked entirely if the judicial officer finds that the accused has:

    (1) intimidated or harassed a victim, potential witness, juror, or judicial officer in violation of a condition of release; or

    (2) repeatedly violated conditions of release in a manner that impedes the prosecution of the accused; or

    (3) violated a condition or conditions of release that constitute a threat to the integrity of the judicial system; or

    (4) without just cause, failed to appear at a specified time and place ordered by a judicial officer; or

    (5) in violation of a condition of release, been charged with a felony or a crime against a person or an offense similar to the underlying charge, for which, after hearing, probable cause is found. (Added 1989, No. 293 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; amended 2017, No. 164 (Adj. Sess.), § 4.)

  • § 7576. Definitions

    As used in this chapter:

    (1) "Appearance bond" means a written agreement that allows a person charged with a criminal offense to be released if the person pledges to pay the court a specified amount in the event the person fails to appear at a court proceeding.

    (2) "Bail" means any security, including cash, pledged to the court to ensure that a person charged with a criminal offense will appear at future court proceedings.

    (3) "Clinical assessment" means the procedures, to be conducted after a client has been screened, by which a licensed or otherwise approved counselor identifies and evaluates an individual's strengths, weaknesses, problems, and needs for the development of a treatment plan.

    (4) "Needs screening" means a preliminary systematic procedure to evaluate the likelihood that an individual has a substance abuse or a mental health condition.

    (5) "Risk assessment" means a pretrial assessment that is designed to be predictive of a person's failure to appear in court and risk of violating pretrial conditions of release with a new alleged offense.

    (6) "Secured appearance bond" means a written agreement which allows a person charged with a criminal offense to be released if:

    (A) the person pledges to pay the court a specified amount in the event that the person fails to appear at a court proceeding; and

    (B) a portion of the bond is paid to the court prior to release.

    (7) "Surety" means:

    (A) a person who agrees to be responsible for guaranteeing the appearance in court of a person charged with a criminal offense; or

    (B) a person who agrees to be responsible for guaranteeing that another person complies with the conditions of a peace bond under section 7573 of this title.

    (8) "Surety bond" means a written agreement, in a form established by the Court Administrator, under which a surety guarantees the appearance in court of a person charged with a criminal offense, and pledges to pay the court a specified amount if the person fails to appear.

    (9) "Flight from prosecution" means any action or behavior undertaken by a person charged with a criminal offense to avoid court proceedings. (Added 2001, No. 124 (Adj. Sess.), § 11, eff. June 5, 2002; amended 2015, No. 12, § 1, eff. May 1, 2015; 2017, No. 164 (Adj. Sess.), § 5.)