In some criminal cases nationwide, including Georgia, individuals charged with a crime could be released on their own recognizance. Instead of having to pay bail or post bond, O.R. allows the accused individual to remain free until his or her next court appearance. When a criminal defense attorney suggests own recognizance release, the court typically considers specific aspects of the alleged crime.
Along with the severity of the charges, the judge will consider the criminal record of the defendant and any dangers the release would pose to the public. Employment and ties to the community and family will also be considered. If O.R. is granted, the accused might be ordered not to leave the area, and to report to the court at predetermined intervals until the charges are resolved.
Own recognizance release could have additional conditions set by the judge, such as a multiple-DUI offender ordered to surrender his or her vehicle and attend classes at an alcohol rehabilitation center. Those accused of domestic violence might have to attend classes about domestic violence, and a temporary restraining order might be put in place. Depending on the crime charged, other conditions might include orders to avoid contact with convicted felons or known gang members, attend classes for anger management; additionally, the court sometimes keeps the passports of defendants.
Own recognizance release can be granted during the first court hearing, or a judge might include it as a part of a pretrial release program. Retaining the services of an experienced criminal defense attorney is a sensible step for anyone in Georgia who is accused of a crime. A lawyer can advocate for the client and work toward the best possible outcome, which might start with an own recognizance release.