Essay Writing

Pretrial Release


Pretrial release requires   that the regulations spelt out by the eight amendments be strictly adhered to. To  ensue  that the  release  is not haphazardly done, it is  required  that the interest  of the authority/ government in the  case  be determined . the  amendment  requires  that   before  the  pretrial  release  is permitted the defendant must make a commitment  to attend  the  proceedings as  per the  court’s  calendar. As such, the eighth amendment was  drafted  to safeguard  the interest  of parties  to  a case,  that is, the  plaintiff and  the  defendant.  The government’s interest is to ensure that justice is administered and the case is concluded. On  the other  hand, through the  bail / pretrial release, the amendment  sought to enforce  human right in that the  defendant is given sufficient time  to prepare  for  the   trial.

Pretrial Release

Based on the amendments, it is   required   that the safety of the society be taken into account before a pretrial bail is granted. As such, one who is not considered as a security threat to the society would have a bail before trial. On the  contrary,  one who is reasonably and  convincingly   believed   to be a  threat to  the society or  other  person (s), cannot be  granted pretrial  release  but be in  detention as he  or she awaits trial. The need  for  such  conditions  is to  carry out ‘preventive detention’ so  that the suspects  may not   go out and  do more harm or evil  to  others and  the  community and large.

There are however conditions that must be met before a pretrial release. The perceived dangerousness of the suspect to the society must be ascertained. There must be a convincing/ concrete evidence to support the claim so that subjectivity does not prevail. The  normal conditions that  normally  lead to pretrial  release are  determined by the nature  of  the charges  that  one faces. For example, violation   of a city by laws or municipal ordinance may not be considered a serous offence like murder so that such persons are entitled to pretrial release.

The eighth amendment also tackles the issues   relating to bails. However, the bail value is stipulated to be reasonable and not excessive. According to Lemke (2009),  the eight amendment  to the constitution outlawed  excessive bail As such  one the  factors that  determines  the size of the  bail set by the court is  reasonableness. Based on the premise that the amount should not be exceeded, it is required that it be reasonable. Additionally, the suspects’ condition also acts as a guiding factor in determining the bail amount. As such, the   amount needs to be particularized to the suspect in question to avoid the excessive charges.

At the same time the government’s interest must be applied as guidance in calculating the bail amount. As such, the figures arrived at must not be excessive but enough to assert the government’s interest. As such, the interest of the government here is guarantee   of the suspect’s   court appearance without coercion. Also, it is in the interest of the government that if the suspect if awarded a jail term, he or she must submit to it. Emphatically, the pretrial release in ‘conditioned upon the [defendants] giving adequate assurances [to the court] that he will stand trial and submit to sentencing if found guilty’, as deduced on the Stack v. Boyle (Lemke, 2009).

These factors, based on the probability of default or cooperation by the suspect act as guiding factors in determination of the bail amount and no more than the value of the government’s interest should be charged. Summarily, if the crime is serious and there is high likelihood of the offender not return to court, the bail will be higher.

In conclusion, the eighth amendment spells out the kinds of charges that can be bailed and the ones that cannot   be granted bail. It is therefore the prerogative of the court to determine the sufficiency and seriousness of the case therein. If the offence   is viewed as sufficiently serous, it is required   that the court do not give a bail. However, the court must not set prohibitive fees that may bar the defendant from raising the bail in order to earn the pretrial release (U. S. Courts, 2010).


Lemke, A. (2009). Evaluation of the Pretrial Release Pilot Program in the Mesa

Municipal Court. Retrieved August 16, 2010, from

U. S. Courts. (2010). The administrative office of the United States courts. Retrieved

August 16, 2010, from

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