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How long can they keep someone in jail before seeing a judge?

Phoenix, AZ |
Filed under: Criminal defense

my fiance was arrested yesterday and hasnt been charged. he is being held at the state prison since then. no one i call will give me information and i want to know how long they can keep him without seeing a judge. if he has a hearing on jaunary 13th does that mean he will be detained until then? this is his first offense and it is for stealing.

Attorney Answers 2


  1. I apologize for running across this question a week after it was pertinent, but just in case you are still wondering about this I figured I'd respond:

    Under Arizona law, your fiance is entitled to an "initial appearance" before a judge within 24-hours of arrest. At this hearing the judge will determine whether to release your fiance on his "own recognizance" (i.e., releasing him without supervision or requiring him to pay a bond), or whether to set an appearance bond (i.e., a sum of money that must be posted if your fiance is to be released).

    By now, all of this probably should have happened, and your fiance has probably already been set for a "not guilty arraignment." If the jail court posted a bond, you can request that the bond be reduced by the Commissioner (who will preside over the not guilty arraignment). If you're going to make such a request, be ready to explain why the amount should be reduced (i.e., the ties your fiance has to the community, family, work, etc.; the lack of likelihood of him fleeing; the inability to raise such a substantial bond amount, etc.). Formal charges will come at the "preliminary hearing," which will be set soon (if it hasn't been already), or at a grand jury proceeding (which the Maricopa County Attorney's Office will frequently pursue instead of a preliminary hearing).


  2. I apologize for running across this question a week after it was pertinent, but just in case you are still wondering about this I figured I'd respond:

    Under Arizona law, your fiance is entitled to an "initial appearance" before a judge within 24-hours of arrest. At this hearing the judge will determine whether to release your fiance on his "own recognizance" (i.e., releasing him without supervision or requiring him to pay a bond), or whether to set an appearance bond (i.e., a sum of money that must be posted if your fiance is to be released).

    By now, all of this probably should have happened, and your fiance has probably already been set for a "not guilty arraignment." If the jail court posted a bond, you can request that the bond be reduced by the Commissioner (who will preside over the not guilty arraignment). If you're going to make such a request, be ready to explain why the amount should be reduced (i.e., the ties your fiance has to the community, family, work, etc.; the lack of likelihood of him fleeing; the inability to raise such a substantial bond amount, etc.). Formal charges will come at the "preliminary hearing," which will be set soon (if it hasn't been already), or at a grand jury proceeding (which the Maricopa County Attorney's Office will frequently pursue instead of a preliminary hearing).

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