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NCJ Number: 43620 Find in a Library
Title: PRE-TRIAL BAIL AND CUSTODY IN THE SCOTTISH SHERIFF COURTS
Author(s): M MELVIN; P J DIDCOTT
Corporate Author: Scottish Home and Health Dept
United Kingdom
Date Published: 1976
Page Count: 89
Sponsoring Agency: Her Majesty's Stationery Office
Norwich, NR3 1GN,
Scottish Home and Health Dept
Edinburgh, Scotland
Sale Source: Her Majesty's Stationery Office
PO Box 29
Norwich, NR3 1GN,
United Kingdom
Language: English
Country: United Kingdom
Annotation: THIS STUDY PROVIDES INFORMATION ON BAIL PRACTICE AND ON THE ACCUSED, FACTORS AFFECTING BAIL GRANTING AND COMMITTALS TO CUSTODY, BAIL GRANTING AND ABUSES OF BAIL, AND DISCUSSES IMPLICATIONS FOR SCOTTISH BAIL PRACTICE.
Abstract: ALL BAIL AND CUSTODY CASES ARISING IN ONE YEAR (1972-1973) IN ALL SHERIFF COURTS WERE EXAMINED. A QUESTIONNAIRE WAS COMPLETED FOR EACH CASE COVERING CRIMINAL AND SOCIAL BACKGROUND OF THE ACCUSED, AS WELL AS DETAILS OF THE PROCEEDINGS (INCLUDING CHARGES) FROM FIRST COURT APPEARANCE THROUGH FINAL DISPOSAL, WITH PARTICULAR EMPHASIS ON BAIL HEARINGS. THE REASONS FOR OPPOSING BAIL WERE RECORDED. IN ADDITION, IT WAS ALSO NOTED WHETHER AN ACCUSED RELEASED ON BAIL FAILED TO APPEAR IN COURT WHEN REQUIRED AND/OR WAS KNOWN TO HAVE COMMITTED FURTHER OFFENSES. BAIL STATISTICS PROVIDE INFORMATION ON THE FOLLOWING: BAIL GRANTING, APPLICATION FOR BAIL, RELEASE ON BAIL, OPPOSITION TO BAIL, BAIL MONEY, TIME SPENT AWAITING TRIAL, APPEALS AGAINST THE BAIL/CUSTODY DECISION, AND BAIL ABUSE. ALSO DISCUSSED ARE THE FACTORS RELATED TO BAIL AND CUSTODY, THE FAILURE TO APPLY FOR BAIL, DELAYS IN FINDING BAIL MONEY, AND BAIL ABUSE. FINDINGS ON BAIL, CUSTODY, THE OUTCOME OF TRIAL, AND SENTENCE ARE SUMMARIZED. IT IS CONCLUDED THAT WHILE THE MAIN CONCERN WHEN CONSIDERING BAIL IS AN ACCUSED'S CHANCES OF ABUSING HIS RELEASE (E.G., BY REOFFENDING), AND THE FACTORS RELATED TO BAIL ABUSE ARE THOSE USED AS THE MAIN CRITERIA FOR BAIL DECISIONMAKING, THE MAJORITY OF PEOPLE WHO COULD BE DESCRIBED AS BAD RISKS ACCORDING TO THESE CRITERIA DID NOT ABUSE THEIR RELEASE ON BAIL. IF IT IS ACCEPTED THAT AS MANY PEOPLE AS POSSIBLE SHOULD BE RELEASED, CONSIDERATION MIGHT BE GIVEN TO AN EVEN LESS CAUTIOUS APPROACH TO BAIL GRANTING. AS IT IS DIFFICULT TO IDENTIFY POTENTIAL REOFFENDERS, WHO FACE NORMAL CRIMINAL SANCTIONS IN ANY CASE, IT IS SUGGESTED THAT THE POTENTIALLY DANGEROUS OFFENDER BE KEPT IN CUSTODY RATHER THAN USING PREVENTIVE DETENTION FOR THE BULK OF LESS SERIOUS OFFENDERS, WHO MAY OR MAY NOT REOFFEND. A RELAXING OF BAIL PRACTICE WOULD NOT BE LIKELY TO RESULT IN A DRAMATIC INCREASE IN THE ABUSE OF BAIL, EITHER BY ABSCONDING OR REOFFENDING. THE QUESTIONNAIRE AND SUPPORTING DATA ARE APPENDED. REFERENCES ARE INCLUDED.
Index Term(s): Bail/Financial Release; Pretrial procedures; Recidivism; United Kingdom (UK)
Note: SCOTTISH OFFICE SOCIAL RESEARCH STUDY
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=43620

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