Preliminary Hearings in Kentucky

Preliminary Hearings in Kentucky

Question: When a person is arrested for a felony in Kentucky, how long until he can get out of jail? Also, is this an important part of the case where he should have a criminal defense attorney?

Answer: When a defendant is arrested in Kentucky on a felony warrant, the government can do the initial arraignment within a week or so. At this initial arraignment in District court (misdemeanor court), the judge will let the defendant know the charges and, if he qualifies for the public defender, appoint the department of public advocacy, or allow time to hire private counsel. The judge will also set a date for a “preliminary hearing” which must occur within 10 days of arraignment. At the prelim, the government would need to show probable cause for the charges to detain the defendant while the government seeks an indictment with the grand jury. they will have 60 days after the prelim to do that. Lastly, at the prelim, the judge will set a bond. Often, the government will make a deal to skip the hearing for a reduced bond.

Many things can happen at that preliminary hearing, but statistically, defendants without a lawyer don’t do as well at getting a bond they can afford as with a lawyer.

Because of that, and because Kentucky does not have or allow bail bondsmen, the preliminary hearing is extremely important because what the judge sets as bond may keep your son in jail for another 60 days until the next real chance to get out.

Get him a lawyer, even if just for the prelim.Many things can happen at that preliminary hearing, but statistically, defendants without a lawyer don’t do as well at getting a bond they can afford as with a lawyer.

Because of that, and because Kentucky does not have or allow bail bondsmen, the preliminary hearing is extremely important because what the judge sets as bond may keep your son in jail for another 60 days until the next real chance to get out.

Get him a lawyer, even if just for the preliminary hearing.

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