Courts hold bond hearings every day in South Carolina. Usually, a judge sets bond when an arrest is processed, but there are instances where he or she may deny a bond.
After an arrest in South Carolina, the law entitles you to a bond hearing within 48 hours.
A bond hearing by video
In a traditional bond hearing, defendants appear before a judge in a courtroom. However, the courts also conduct video hearings. The judge may be elsewhere, but he or she sees the defendants remotely. To appear in this kind of hearing, you will simply sign a document stating that you give your consent to the video procedure.
You may face criminal charges for which no bond has been set. You will appear in criminal court to find out if the judge sets a bond, and if so, what the amount will be. In considering the charges against you, a judge may decide to deny bond if he or she determines offense is too serious. He or she may also deny bond if it appears you are a flight risk or a danger to the community.
If you have access to a large amount of bond money, the judge may require further information. Based on the circumstances surrounding your arrest and any prior criminal record you might have, the judge may suspect that the bond money comes from some sort of criminal activity. The court may, therefore, deny bond because the judge thinks you may use the money to leave the country to avoid prosecution. In fact, during your bond hearing, the judge may order you not to leave the state of South Carolina or have any contact with the alleged victim of the offense.
Protecting your rights
The future may seem bleak if law enforcement has arrested you for a criminal offense, but you do not need to face the bond hearing or anything else pertaining to the charges alone. Remember that you have rights, and a skilled advocate will vigorously protect those rights, ensuring that you have a fair and well-managed defense.