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Ask Dave Kennett Your Own Question
Dave Kennett
Dave Kennett, Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 27689
Experience:  25 years experience practicing attorney
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Customer Question

Can a judge make a medical evaluation after a defendant is taken to hosp during trial and not retnd until next evening? Judge is saying that she will nt reinstate bail as a punishment which isnt bail's purpose. Said she must be sure defend will appear in court. Defendant had proviously complied with everyrhing ie call bail bondsman, appeared at all previous hearings, has no prev record. Defend thought he was having heart attack (prev had 2) EMT called amb. Bail revoked as standard procedure. Since he didnt have heart attach judge said he faked symptoms as he knew what they were having experienced them twice before. Yet she has allowed defend released to atty 2-3 times per week with no restraints or guards. Atty can take him to eat see his family and work on case in attys office. Does judge have right to make a medical call with no medical background
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Dave Kennett replied 5 years ago.

-Could you explain your situation a little more?
Was there bail money posted that was revoked?

Is there any amount set for bail at this time?

What kind of case is this?

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Bail was set several mos prior. Judge revoked bail at time of health incident stating it was common procedure, Defendant was refused reinstatement of bail as judge said he didnt have anything wrong and thought he perpetrated a fraud on the court even though he went to hosp by amblulance sirens and all as EMT called them. Kept overnite in hosp and retnd next evening, Was not heart attack. But there were other health issues going on so he was kept till levels etc were normal. Original bail was $30,000. ALLEGED sex acts on minor ten yrs ago. Child would have been 8 now 18.
Expert:  Dave Kennett replied 5 years ago.
Dear JACUSTOMER - The judge has wide discretion when setting bail as whether it was based on a medical decision or simply that there was a perceived risk of flight it is the judge's call. Assuming the defendant is currently in trial the amount of time involved will be relatively short. Either he will be convicted or found not guilty and that will resolve the problem If he is found guilty bail would be revoked and if he is found not guilty he will be set free. Generally his attorney could file an appeal of the bail ruling but with the trial in progress there probably would not be enough time to hear the appeal before the trial is concluded. I'm not certain if the medical incident affected the progress of the trial but judges are very protective over the trial process and if they believe a defendant or anyone else is doing something to disrupt the process the judge can get angry. Apparently that is what happened in this case and there may be a good reason to appeal. As I said, there may not be enough time to appeal before the trial is over but an appeal is the only procedure the defendant can use to get the bail ruling reversed. Whether the judge was wrong or not the judge has the authority to revoke the bail.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
How is a judge being fair and impartial b geting angry and saying that she is punishing him by not reinstating bail?. The defendent was at all hearings status and otherwise never missed and never missed contacting bondsman. As a matter of fact bondsman couldnt understand why bail was not reinstated and sent letter to judge saying they were more than willing to reinstate. Again no prior record or anything.
Expert:  Dave Kennett replied 5 years ago.
I agree with you but the problem is the judge has the power over the bail decision, fair or unfair. The only option is to appeal the decision to a higher court as I said above. I understand what you are saying and that the judge made the wrong decision but neither I nor anyone else except an appeals court can overturn the decision. So unless you appeal the decision will stand.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
You didnt tell me anyhting I didnt already know nor did you answer my original question.
Expert:  Dave Kennett replied 5 years ago.
I believe I did answer your question but here goes one more time. The judge has the discretion to make decision on bail and if you disagree you have to file an appeal. Whether the decision is a "medical" decision is really not the issue since it is a decision based on the overall facts as the judge perceives them. I'm not certain what it is you want to know? There is a decision by a judge that you don't like and the only way to get that decision changed is to appeal to a higher court just like any oner case where a decision goes against you. I can sit here all day and agree with your position that the ruling is unfair but it doesn't change the ruling. Whether the decision was based on medical reasons or the judge's anger doesn't matter. It can't be overturned without filing an appeal. I'm not sure what else I can say. There are no magic solutions to these situations.