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Bond Hearing vs a Detention Hearing

What Is the Difference Between a Bond Hearing and Detention Hearing for Juveniles?

When the justice system handles charges against a juvenile (anyone under 18 years of age who is not being tried as an adult), the process is significantly different. It’s different from what is portrayed in movies and television, and it’s also different enough that an experienced juvenile defense attorney in Virginia Beach is your best option for getting the best possible results.

Juvenile Detention Hearing in Virginia

In juvenile cases, a detention hearing is just what it sounds like — a juvenile judge or intake officer — issues an order detaining the juvenile pending a hearing. When this happens, the juvenile is most often sent to a juvenile detention center until their hearing. — In my experience, this is almost never the best option for your child.

What to Know About Detention Hearing:

  • Held soon after arrest (within 72 hours) to decide if the juvenile should stay in detention or be released until their court date.
  • Focuses on whether there's probable cause to believe the juvenile committed the offense along with other factors.
  • Judge or intake officer considers factors like the offense's seriousness, the juvenile's background, and their ability to follow release conditions.
  • No bond is set at this hearing.

Probable Cause Detention

The court can detain a juvenile when they find probable cause that the juvenile is accused of committing a serious crime, will continue to reoffend, a risk of harm to himself or others, will not follow the rules of the court and/or his parents pending trial, or are a flight risk. If the juvenile is sent to a detention center, the juvenile will be held in secure custody until the final court hearing, which could be weeks or months down the road.

Juvenile Bond Hearing in Virginia

This is significantly different than a bond hearing that an adult undergoes. There are specific factors the juvenile judges and probation officers consider before releasing the juvenile from a detention center pending trial.

Juvenile Bond Hearing vs. Adult Bond Hearing in Virginia

In Virginia, both bond hearings and juvenile bond hearings deal with a person's release before trial, but they differ significantly due to the nature of the court system handling them. Here are the key differences:

Bond Hearing (Adult):

  • Conducted in circuit court for adults charged with crimes.
  • Determines if the defendant can be released before trial by setting a bond amount.
  • Higher bond amounts for serious offenses or defendants considered flight risks.
  • Focuses on ensuring the defendant appears in court and maintaining public safety.

Juvenile Bond Hearing (Minor):

  • Held in juvenile and domestic relations district court (JDR court) for minors accused of delinquent acts (juvenile offenses).
  • Follows a detention hearing which decides if the juvenile stays in detention or gets released.
  • Determines if the juvenile can be released before their court date by setting a bond amount and release conditions.
  • Release conditions prioritize the juvenile's safety, rehabilitation, and ensuring court appearances.
  • Bond amounts are typically lower compared to adult bond hearings.

You need an experienced defense lawyer who practices regularly before the juvenile court that can present those relevant factors to the court. We will work closely with you to develop a game plan for the detention hearing and present those specific factors to the court that will convince the judge to release your child.

JRLaw, PLC: Your Trusted Juvenile Defense Lawyer

If y​our son or daughter or a juvenile you care about is suspected of a crime, it’s important to get an experienced juvenile lawyer involved right away. Juvenile criminal defense is a unique area of the law in Virginia and the best representation comes from an attorney with significant experience handling such cases.

For trusted legal defense anywhere in Virginia Beach or a surrounding area, contact us today. Backed by over 15 years of experience in Virginia Beach, we represent individuals in Newport News, Hampton, Chesapeake, Suffolk, Portsmouth, and Norfolk.

Contact Attorney Jerrell Johnson at JRLaw, PLC to put over 15 years of experience on your side (757) 447-0080.

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