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Illinois Personal Injury & Criminal Defense / Blog / Criminal Defense / Defendant Wins Appeal to Strike Pretrial Release Order Under SAFE-T Act

Defendant Wins Appeal to Strike Pretrial Release Order Under SAFE-T Act


On August 6, 2021, an Illinois defendant was charged with one count of possession of methamphetamine. He posted a $5000 bond to get out of jail while awaiting trial. On August 25, 2023, the same defendant was pulled over for a traffic stop. It was determined that he was driving on a revoked license. He was taken into custody by police officers and proceeded to spit on one of the officers as he was being taken into custody. He was subsequently charged with aggravated battery on a police officer, which is a class-2 felony in Illinois. On September 7, 2023, the state moved to revoke the defendant’s pretrial release based on the new charges of spitting on the officer. On September 14, the defendant filed a motion to strike the state’s motion to hold the defendant until trial.

The defendant’s motion argued that the State could not hold the defendant under provisions of the SAFE-T Act because the law had not gone into effect until the 18th of September. The circuit court thus granted the defendant’s motion to strike.

On September 18, when the SAFE-T Act went into effect, the defendant filed a new motion to have a hearing to discuss pretrial release. A hearing was held on September 21. At that time, the defendant moved to strike the state’s position to revoke pretrial release arguing that it was not timely. The circuit court granted the defendant’s motion to strike.

The state would move again to deny the defendant pretrial release. The hearing was scheduled for September 22, 2023. The state argued that there was proof by evidence and the presumption was great that the defendant committed a detainable offense, in this case, a forcible felony, under section 110-6.1(a) of the SAFE-T Act. The state also argued that the defendant posed a real and present threat to the safety of the community. The defendant again filed a motion to strike the state’s petition to deny the defendant pretrial release. The defendant argued that the state’s petition was not timely. The court granted the defendant’s petition to strike the motion.

With regards to the motion to hold the defendant, the court ruled that the state was required to file a detention petition at the time of the defendant’s first appearance if the defendant had been detained or within 21 days of the defendant’s arrest and release if the defendant had not been detained.

A lot of confusion is happening right now because defendants who were previously released on bond are now facing hearings related to prosecutions that move forward under the SAFE-T Act which does away with cash bail. In the case mentioned above, the prosecution would have had to file their motion to hold the defendant earlier in the case.

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The Decatur criminal defense attorneys at Patel Law, PC represent the interests of defendants in criminal cases. Call our office today to schedule an appointment, and we can begin preparing your defense immediately.



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