Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 19.2. Criminal Procedure
Chapter 9. Bail and Recognizances

§ 19.2-120. Admission to bail.

Prior to conducting any hearing on the issue of bail, release or detention, the judicial officer shall, to the extent feasible, obtain the person's criminal history.

A. A person who is held in custody pending trial or hearing for an offense, civil or criminal contempt, or otherwise shall be admitted to bail by a judicial officer, unless there is probable cause to believe that:

1. He will not appear for trial or hearing or at such other time and place as may be directed, or

2. His liberty will constitute an unreasonable danger to himself, family or household members as defined in § 16.1-228, or the public.

B. In making a determination under subsection A, the judicial officer shall consider all relevant information, including (i) the nature and circumstances of the offense; (ii) whether a firearm is alleged to have been used in the commission of the offense; (iii) the weight of the evidence; (iv) the history of the accused or juvenile, including his family ties or involvement in employment, education, or medical, mental health, or substance abuse treatment; (v) his length of residence in, or other ties to, the community; (vi) his record of convictions; (vii) his appearance at court proceedings or flight to avoid prosecution or convictions for failure to appear at court proceedings; and (viii) whether the person is likely to obstruct or attempt to obstruct justice, or threaten, injure, or intimidate, or attempt to threaten, injure, or intimidate, a prospective witness, juror, victim, or family or household member as defined in § 16.1-228.

C. The judicial officer shall inform the person of his right to appeal from the order denying bail or fixing terms of bond or recognizance consistent with § 19.2-124.

D. If the judicial officer sets a secured bond and the person engages the services of a licensed bail bondsman, the magistrate executing recognizance for the accused shall provide the bondsman, upon request, with a copy of the person's Virginia criminal history record, if readily available, to be used by the bondsman only to determine appropriate reporting requirements to impose upon the accused upon his release. The bondsman shall pay a $15 fee payable to the state treasury to be credited to the Literary Fund, upon requesting the defendant's Virginia criminal history record issued pursuant to § 19.2-389. The bondsman shall review the record on the premises and promptly return the record to the magistrate after reviewing it.

1975, c. 495; 1978, c. 755; 1979, c. 649; 1987, c. 390; 1991, c. 581; 1993, c. 636; 1996, c. 973; 1997, cc. 6, 476; 1999, cc. 829, 846; 2000, c. 797; 2002, cc. 588, 623; 2004, cc. 308, 360, 406, 412, 461, 819, 954, 959; 2005, c. 132; 2006, c. 504; 2007, cc. 134, 386, 745, 923; 2008, c. 596; 2010, c. 862; 2011, cc. 445, 450, 480; 2012, c. 467; 2015, c. 413; 2018, c. 71; 2020, c. 999; 2021, Sp. Sess. I, cc. 337, 344, 345, 523, 540.

The chapters of the acts of assembly referenced in the historical citation at the end of this section may not constitute a comprehensive list of such chapters and may exclude chapters whose provisions have expired.