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Is it true they have 21 days to present a case and if there is no new evidence supporting the charges he will be released?

Lakeland, FL |

my boyfriend was falsely accused of armed robbery along with 4 other charges he did not commit. the judge denied him the right to a public defender and we dont have the money for an attorney. he is only 20 yrs old and they are talking about 2 life sentences if convicted. he is innocent but still doesnt have a public defender and the detective told me he has 21 days to build a case but he isnt going to find anything because he is innocent. will they let him go?

at his first appearance the judge asked him how much he has saved up and he responded "none" the judge stated that was not a sufficient answer and stated he would not be appointed a public defender until he provides correct financial information. we have no money at all, no money saved, no money at all. the detective basically told me the warrant issued was basically based off of here-say but there was no physical evidence BECAUSE HE WAS NOT INVOLVED!! i spoke to the detective and he told me has 21 days to present a case and if there is nothing against him they have to drop the charges or release him. the 21st day would be the 29th of this month but he has a court date for Aug 6th, but he still has not been appointed a public defender. he is an innocent man, how long can they hold him if nothing comes up-which again nothing will come up because he was not involved

Attorney Answers 3

  1. Not exactly. He can request an adversarial preliminary hearing to determine whether there is sufficient probable cause to have him held. Furthermore, the State must file charges within 33 days or release him on his own recognizance (without having to pay a bond). The problem is that very little will be accomplished without an attorney. Why did the judge deny him a public defender? The only viable reason for a denial of a public defender is that he has too many assets. If he does not qualify for a public defender you may want to see if you can hire an attorney on a limited basis. Instead of hiring an attorney to handle the whole case, perhaps hire an attorney only to handle a bond motion/adversarial preliminary hearing/or 33 day motion. Good luck!

    This is not to be considered legal advice nor does an attorney-client relationship exist.

  2. Mr. Trabin is spot on.

  3. I agree with Mr. Trabin that after 21 days of incarceration, a person is entitled to an adversarial probable cause hearing if formal charges have not been filed prior to the 21st day. I also agree that a person has a right to file a motion for release after 30 days if no formal charges have been filed. I further state that it is possible to wait out until the 41st day and see if formal charges are filed. If they are not, then no matter what charges may ultimately be filed, this person is entitled to be released on their own recognizance. At this point, it might be best to wait out the time and see if any charges are timely filed.
    As far as hiring an attorney only to do a bond motion, my experience has been that judges frown upon that practice and some judges will not allow for an attorney to appear in a limited capacity for a bond motion only and will not allow the attorney to withdraw. I personally do not make limited appearances for this very reason. These are serious charges and if he has no means to hire an attorney, then a court will ultimately appoint counsel for him. If they do not, then the court runs the significant risk of having this case reversed on an appeal.

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