First Appearance In Jail
Disclaimer: This article is in response to questions frequently asked of Mr. Cobb and is an unedited dictation transcript. Just like talk to text on your smartphone, there may be misspelled words or sentence fragments.
Now, let’s say that you or someone you love has been arrested, you have been taken to jail, what is the next step? When is your first court date? In Florida, your next court date is normally going to be within 24 hours of the time you were arrested. Now, what also matters is if you are in the cycle, what cycle am I talking about? It’s called a First Appearance Cycle. And your very first court date is actually normally done in the jail and it’s called First Appearance. During that proceeding, a judge will often appear on a video camera instead of in-person, not always but usually, and the judge is going to make a total of 3 determinations. Number one, they are going to determine, is there probable cause? If this is a warrant case that someone was picked up upon, then the answer is yes, probable cause exists. Otherwise, the judge will make a specific finding. Second, the judge is going to decide are you entitled to a bond? If you are entitled to a bond, the judge is going to ask the third question very quietly and internally. And that third question is going to be, how much will the bond amount be? What kind of conditions will be present?
Now, I have to give you a caution here. If it is a violation of probation or it is a violation of community control that has been alleged, then normally the only judge that will give you a bond, if at all, will be the judge that signed the order asking or really commanding that you be taken into custody to answer to an allegation of violation of probation or community control.
Another thing you need to be very careful about is in felony cases, you don’t always have a right to a bond. So, the time to contact an attorney is immediately and we’ll go into that in more detail in our next video.
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