Approximately how much is someones bail for assault and battery? Also for someone who is charged with two charges such as, assault and battery and attempted murder?
The primary purpose of bail is to assure that the accused person comes to court when they are supposed to. There is a statutory preference in Massachusetts that accused persons generally be released on "personal recogniznce" without having to pay any bail. "Personal Recognizance" means a peson's promise and agreement to appear in Court. In the vast majority of criminal cases where the only charge is assault and battery the accused person is not required to put up any cash bail and is generally released on "personal recogniznce". Oftentimes in assault and battery cases the Judge will order the accused person to stay away from and have no contact with the alleged victim. As I said the primary purpose of bail is to assure that the person shows up.
In some criminal cases there may be a concern about the safety of the public and/or the safety of a particular individual if the accused is released. In those cases the District Attorney may ask the Judge to order the accused person detained. Detained means held without bail. There is a statute that allows a Judge to order a person detained - held without bail - if the Judge, after a full hearing, makes a determination that there are no conditions of release that would protect the public or a specific individual in the community from the accused. In the case of someone charged with attempted murder it would not be unusual for the District Attorney to request that the accused person be detained (held without bail).
There are many factors (the statute sets out approximately 20) that a Judge must consider in deciding whether to release someone or to order someone detained. These are fact specific determinations and each case depends on its own facts. How strong is the state's case; how violent was the attack; the seriousness of the charges; the criminal record - if any - of the accused; and so forth.
I hope this helps.
Robert D. Lewin, Attorney
LEWIN & LEWIN, CRIMINAL LAWYERS
Offices in Andover, North Andover, and Malden, MA
Whether there is bail or personal recognizance is up to the judge (your attorney should be making a good argument for you). The judge's attitude will also be influenced by what the prosecutor wants--sometimes they are ok with personal and sometimes they want bail.
If the charge was just A&B with nothing too bad, then you would have a very good chance at personal recognizance. But you said attempted murder. If this charge survives, then you would be going to superior court sometime after you district court arraignment. Is the attempted murder charge du to an allegation of strangling? I ask because Massachusetts has no strangulation statute. While these offenses are often judge A&B with a dangerous weapon, there is a strong preference to charge them as attempted murder. On bail, there is a likelihood that a bail amount would be asked for here given the attempted murder, but it is hard to say how much. Again, your attorney should make a good argument for you. Last, because of the attempted murder (particularly if there is real harm done to someone), then you might also be facing a dangerousness hearing, which is a different matter altogether. Get a lawyer.
The defendant needs to hire a criminal defense attorney in your area ASAP. Bond is set based on many factors: the seriousness of the charges, the defendants prior criminal record, any history of failures to appear, the position taken by the prosecutor at the time of arraignment, etc. Get counsel!
The real purpose of bail is to assure the defendant's appearance at future court dates - not to punish the defendant. In most cases, there is a presumption of "recognizance" which means no bail, however certain factors come into play when determining bail: criminal record, history of defaults, history of warrants, etc.
The biggest factor in determining bail is history of Defaults - meaning prior failures to appear at scheduled court dates. Also some other factors the court looks at is whether you have a stable home, live near the court, and if you are a flight risk.
If there is an Attempted Murder charge, dangerousness and the facts of the allegations come into play and bail could be very high. See a lawyer right away.
Each case, like each defendant, is different. Many factors will be considered by the judge, but I suggest the most important factors will be: 1. what does the "victim" want? In other words, the person who was assaulted. Do they want the defendant released, to come home and all is forgiven? Or, is it a stranger who is terrified and wants them locked up and for the judge to "throw away the key"? The complainant will be asked by the DA's office for input or if they are truly concerned, they should go to court on the same day that bail is set and weigh in. As a corollary, any injury to the "victim" will be taken into consideration. 2. Does the defendant have "roots in the community"? If the person has a steady job or a supportive family or both, their chances for getting a reasonable bail, even on "attempted murder" are better than if they can't make that showing. Finally, tell your lawyer what the family can afford to pay and be honest. A lot of people try to say "nothing" when an honest appraisal of the family's resources could have resulted in a reasonable bail being set.
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