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Bail Bonds Part I

Bail and Bonds in Mecklenburg County Criminal Court Lawbreaker

The following legal reference materials regarding the bail bond policy in Mecklenburg County are intended as resource information regarding the terms and conditions of release, posting bond, and bail.

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State of North Carolina, County of Mecklenburg

In the General Court of Justice – Bail Policy for the 26th Judicial District

  1. Authority
    Pursuant to North Carolina General Statute §15A-535, the undersigned Senior Resident Superior Court Judge, in consultation with the Chief District Court Judge, orders the recommended policies contained herein to be followed within the District in determining whether, and upon what conditions, a defendant may be released before trial. It is the intent of the Superior Court to review the policy on a biennial basis and update the policy whenever necessary.
  2. General Policy on Pretrial Release Decisions
    The purpose of the pretrial release decision includes providing due process to those accused of a crime, maintaining the integrity of the judicial process by securing defendants for trial; protecting victims, witnesses, and the community from threat, danger, or interference; and minimizing the unnecessary use of secure detention. Under the Eighth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States and Article I Section 27 of the Constitution of North Carolina excessive bail shall not be required. Accused persons, known as defendants, are presumed innocent unless proven guilty. As such, there is a presumption of release on the least restrictive terms and conditions reasonably necessary to assure the appearance of the person as required and the safety of the community with an emphasis on non-monetary conditions of release.
    The judicial official granting pretrial release, pursuant to §15A-534(b), must release the defendant on his written promise to appear, upon his execution of an unsecured appearance bond, or place the defendant in the custody of a designated person or organization agreeing to supervise him unless he determines that such release will not reasonably assure the appearance of the defendant as required; will pose a danger of inquiry to any person; or is likely to result in destruction of evidence, subornation of perjury, or intimidation of potential witnesses.
  1. Persons Authorized to Determine Pretrial Release
    Pursuant to §15A-532, any judicial official including a magistrate, clerk, judge, or justice, is authorized to determine conditions of release unless:
    1. The person is charged with a capital offense, in which case, pursuant to §15A-533(c) a judge may determine in his discretion whether a defendant charged with a capital offense may be released before trial; and,
    2. The person is charged with a crime of domestic violence, in which case, pursuant to §15A-534.1 the judicial official who determines the conditions of pretrial release shall be a judge unless the defendant has been retained in custody for 48 hours from the time of arrest without a determination being made by a judge. If a judge has not acted within 48 hours of arrest, the magistrate must determine pretrial release.
  2. Pretrial Release Considerations
    Pursuant to §15A-534(c), when determining which conditions of release to impose, the judicial official must, on the basis of available information, take into account the following before setting the terms of pretrial release:
    1. The nature and circumstances of the offense charged;
    2. The weight of the evidence against the defendant;
    3. The defendant’s family ties, employment, financial resources, character, and mental condition;
    4. Whether the defendant is intoxicated to such a degree that he or she would be endangered by being released without supervision;
    5. The defendant’s length of residence in the community;
    6. The defendant’s record of convictions;
    7. The defendant’s history of flight to avoid prosecution or failure to appear at court hearings; and,
    8. Any other evidence relevant to the issue of pretrial release.
    Consistent with §15A-534(c), the judicial office should also take into consideration of any of the following circumstances regarding the defendant:
    • Protect public health/known communicable disease;
    • Pending charges in court at the time of the alleged offense;
    • History of substance abuse;
    • Gange involvement;
    • Outstanding warrants, holds, or detainers; and,
    • Designation as a priority offender by law enforcement.
  3. Conditions of Pretrial Release
    1. Pursuant to §15A-534(a), a judicial official must impose one of the following conditions:
      1. Release the defendant on his written promise to appear;
      2. Release the defendant upon his execution of an unsecured appearance bond in an amount specified by the judicial official;
      3. Place the defendant in the custody of a designated person or organization agreeing to release him;
      4. Require the execution of an appearance bond in a specified amount secured by a cash deposit of the full amount of the bond, by a mortgage pursuant to §58-74-5, or by at least one solvent surety; and,
      5. Require house arrest with electronic monitoring with the execution of a secured appearance bond under subdivision 4 above.
    2. Pursuant to §15A-535(b), the judicial official granting pretrial release must impose condition (1), (2), or (3) above unless he determines that such release will not reasonably assure the appearance of the defendant as required; will pose a danger of injury to any person; or is likely to result in destruction of evidence, subornation of perjury, or intimidation of potential witnesses.
    3. In the event that a magistrate determines that imposing condition (4) or (5) is necessary per the statute, the magistrate must record the reasons for so doing in writing on the AOC-CR-200AS form.
    4. General guidance related to bond amount ranges based on the most serious current charge, excluding the charge of murder, is found below.
Type of Charge Electronic Tagging Device

Presumptive Bond Type
Suggested Bond Range

Misdemeanor – Class II, Infractions & Ordinances
Written Promise to Appear or Unsecured
$0 to $1,500

Misdemeanor – Class I, A1 & DWI
Written Promise to Appear, Unsecured, or Secured
$0 to $10,000

Felony – Non-Violent
Written Promise to Appear, Unsecured, or Secured
$10,000 to $100,000

Felony – Violent (including rape and armed robbery)
Unsecured or Secured
Minimum $50,000

Probation Violation
TBD – To Be Determined
TBD – To Be Determined

Probation Violation (Absconding)
TBD – To Be Determined
TBD – To Be Determined

The suggested bond range applies to the most serious current charge. When setting bond for the most serious charge, judicial officials shall take into consideration all charges filed against the defendant to determine an amount. If more than one charge exists, the judicial officer has the discretion to set additional bonds per charge when warranted. A more detailed bond schedule containing suggested bond ranges for the most serious common charges in the County are considered in Attachment A.

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