Many arrested people think that they have a bail hearing and possibly be released on bond. New Mexico makes this difficult with legislation known as the no-bond detention law. This is just an assumption most people make based on the TV shows and films they have seen. What you might not be aware of is that New Mexico has a law that can stop you from being released on bond through the no-bond detention law. You may actually spend months in jail waiting for your court date.
In 2006 New Mexico legislature passed a law that gives judges the authority to decide if you are a danger to the community or a high-risk defendant. If the judge decides you are a risk for the community, then they can refuse to allow you to be released on bail and will hold you until your trial. It doesn’t matter if you can pay the bail amount in the statute, the judge will use their discretion to detain you without bond. Keep in mind that once get arrested, hiring a New Mexico criminal defense attorney is the best thing you can do.
What is the New Mexico No-Bond Detention Law?
According to the constitutional amendment known as the no-bond detention law, bail can be rejected by the judge for a defendant if they are charged with a felony and the prosecution demands a no-bond hearing. The prosecution must show clear and convincing evidence that the defendant’s detainment would protect the community. This amendment gives priority to appeals to deny bail, which means the judge is required to listen and hear evidence.
Under this same amendment, the defendant can be released on bail if they are found to not be a risk or danger to society (this goes even if the defendant can’t afford the bond). The defendant can request relief from the court for their bond amount, and the court will be asked to rule on that bond promptly.
How No-Bond Detention Law Impacts Defendants
The law affects how bonds are assigned for defendants in felony cases and the use of fixed money bond amounts is stopped. The judge will use their discretion and serve the statute for austerer requirements to release the defendant before trial. If the defendant is classified as high-risk, they may be kept without the option for a bond. The law changes how low-risk defendants are handled:
Low-Risk Criminal Defendants
To be a low-risk defendant means to have strong ties to the community such as family, friends, job, residence, and support in place. They must have no risk of flight and typically their previous criminal record should not have any violent crimes. The judge would not consider these defendants at high risk for injuring a member of the community while waiting for trial.
This is what the amendment offers once classified:
- An option for release, even if the defendant cannot afford the bond assigned by the court.
- A pretrial risk assessment, which determines if the defendant is expected to flee or be arrested again before trial.
- The right for an attorney to appeal any bond decision made by the court.
High-Risk Criminal Defendants
On the other hand, high-risk criminal defendants have very low chances of being realized with a bond thanks to the no-bond detention law. The prosecution can demand that they are kept in jail without bail. They do not have to have a past criminal record to be considered high-risk criminal defendants.
These people can be released and then reclassified as high-risk later, which means the bond can be revoked and they will be detained until their trial date. Just because a person was released as a low-risk offender does not mean that they are completely free of being reclassified later.
Hire a New Mexico Criminal Defense Attorney
Once you get arrested, it’s important to stay calm and collaborate with the police. However, this doesn’t mean that you should talk too much. You may refuse to speak or answer any questions before your attorney arrives. Remember, anything you say will be recorded, which means it will be used against you. Waiting for your attorney to arrive and talk to you could spare you from many problems in the future case.
If you’re looking for a criminal defense attorney who will review your case, stand by your side and advise you until the very end of your trial, our team at FBD Law is here to help you. We know how challenging these times can be for the defendant and their families. This is why we’re here at your service; call our office today and schedule your first consultation.