In society, sex offenders are often treated differently than those who have committed other types of crimes. As a society, we consider sex crimes to be among the worst offenses an individual can commit. For this reason, circumstances sometimes differ. For instance, sex offenders must typically register after they have been convicted of a crime.
If you are a registered sex offender who has been charged with another crime, you may wonder if you have the right to bail out of jail as you await trial. This article will clear up some of the confusion.
Can Judges Deny Bail to Sex Offenders?
Generally speaking, judges tend to allow bail for crimes not punishable by death. But this does not mean that bail is always an option. According to the Bail Reform Act of 1984, a judge has the right to deny bail to any defendant he or she determines poses a danger to the community.
In order to determine if a defendant is a danger to the community, the judge can assess the individual’s criminal record, record of appearance in the past, family ties to the area, financial resources, work record, and mental health. The judge can also determine the likelihood that the defendant will not try to flee.
What Has Happened in the Past?
In the past, states like Arizona tried to pass laws in which an individual could be denied bail based on the level of evidence leaning toward guilt of sexual offenses. Some of these laws have passed but since been appealed, and others are still in contention. Some appeals are based on the concept of the high recidivism rate of sex offenders.
States seem to be split on this issue, but the fact of the matter now is that the judge can consider the nature of a sexual offense and probability of conviction only if it may be relevant to the likelihood of the defendant not to appear in court for trial.
The answer to whether sex offenders have access to bail is a complex one. In Tennessee, sex offenders may have access to bail. Whether or not the defendant will be able to pay that bail is a key issue to consider.
For example, one Tennessee man was arrested for solicitation of a minor, violation of sex offender registry regulations, and aggravated statutory rape. He was assigned a $25,000 bond. Another man accused of violating sex offender registry laws by obtaining a smartphone and using a dating website with an unauthorized email address received a $10,000 bond.
What If Your Bail Is Excessive?
Tennessee has maximum limits for how high a judge can set bail. For example, a defendant charged with a misdemeanor can typically only face a bail of $1,000. An individual charged with a felony committed against another person may face a bail up to $50,000 per charge.
If you believe your bail is excessive, you can petition the circuit or criminal court. You should also discuss your bail with your attorney if you feel it does not match up with the circumstances.
What Should You Do Next?
If you have been charged with a crime or believe you will be arrested for a warrant, you should speak with a bail bonds professional right away. If you are a sex offender or are charged with a sex offense, you need to know what to expect when you are handed your bond amount.
Affordable Bail Bonds offers more than a decade of experience in the industry. We serve Rutherford and Cannon Counties with our expertise, helping you through this difficult time. Call us today to learn about your bail bond options.