Criminal Justice Services
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Pretrial Services assists the courts in making release-and-detention decisions that preserve public safety and defendants' civil rights. This is achieved through the following three key activities:
Standardized, validated assessments are conducted on qualifying defendants Objective data regarding risk of future criminal activity and failure to appear in court is provided to all parties in the judicial decision-making process. Pretrial supervision services are provided for eligible defendants referred to the program.
Mecklenburg County is currently a pilot site with the Laura and John Arnold Foundation to use and test their pretrial risk-assessment tool - the Public Safety Assessment -- Court. This tool provides risk scores for each defendant based on variables that have been rigorously tested for their ability to predict future criminal activity and failure to appear in court. Bail recommendations are also guided by the 26th Judicial District Bail Policy. Both the assessment and recommendations serve to promote consistent and reasonable bond requirements. The recommendations offered by Pretrial Services are not binding to the Court.
In-custody defendants meeting program criteria and agreeing to the terms of supervision may be released to Pretrial Services by order of the judicial official. Supervision requirements, which vary by risk level, may include weekly office visits, substance abuse screening, and referral to community resources. Defendants violating the supervision contract are terminated from the program and returned to jail.
2015 Pretrial Services Eligibility Policy
On March 17, 2015 the Mecklenburg County Board of County Commissioners unanimously voted to authorize the new 2015 Pretrial Services Eligibility Policy, as recommended by the District Court Subcommittee.The 2015 Pretrial Services Eligibility Policy does the following compared to the previous policy: Removes restrictions not supported by research;Eligibility for supervision will be based primarily on risk level;High-risk defendants, regardless of their charge, are ineligible for supervision services, and;Charges related to murder, sex, robbery, or escape are automatically ineligible.
On March 17, 2015 the Mecklenburg County Board of County Commissioners unanimously voted to authorize the new 2015 Pretrial Services Eligibility Policy, as recommended by the District Court Subcommittee.
The 2015 Pretrial Services Eligibility Policy does the following compared to the previous policy: