This month the Nevada Supreme Court came out with a case of constitutional import for every person that has any conditions of pre-trial release in the state of Nevada. Whether you’re in Northern Nevada or you’re in southern Nevada this decision affects you.
The decision is called The Johnston Decision. In The Johnson Decision, what essentially happened is an individual who is placed on pre-trial release conditions was alleged to have violated those conditions he stayed in custody for weeks before the state was forced to bring in any evidence.
At the hearing I proved Beyond any reasonable disputation that many of the violations that he was accused of were just flat out false.
Because of that, the Nevada Supreme Court took a look at how pre-trial detention and pre-trial release conditions are fashioned throughout the whole state of
And here’s what it said:
First: There’s no such thing as a small condition. There’s no such thing as a technical violation.
Every condition that’s placed on you as a criminal defendant when you re-released back out in the community is important. Every single one has to be paid attention to.
Second: Every single one that’s placed on you by the court has to be the least restrictive means for obtaining one of two goals: either protecting the community making sure that you’re going to return to court.
Third: If you are accused of violating any of those pre-trial release conditions, it’s the state of Nevada that has the burden of proof.
It’s not you.
It’s not your attorney.
It’s the state of Nevada and the person who puts you in custody for violating your pre-trial release conditions that has to bring in the evidence and has to show the judge what you supposedly did.
Now this means a couple of things: doesn’t matter whether or not you’re accused of violating your pre-trial release conditions and it doesn’t matter whether or not you’re waiting for trial.
If you’re waiting for trial:
This decision means for you that before when you are placed on something called electronic monitoring they slap a bracelet on your ankle like you’re some deer running around the hillsides.
It used to come with a whole series of restrictions a series of blanket restrictions things like alcohol usage. Things like no marijuana usage. These restrictions might have nothing to do with your case but the district courts were placing these restrictions on people because they were just simply a good idea – and then people were coming back to court because they’d been caught drinking alcohol, because they’d been caught smoking a little weed… and so this caused a huge problem in the system where people were making technical violations.
And yet – they were still being brought back into court for them.
Well, the Johnston case tells us there is no such thing as a technical violation.
Every requirement that’s placed on a pre-trial release defendant is important: every single one of them.
So if you’ve got one of these restrictions even if you haven’t violated any of them you need to go back to court and have them addressed and you need to have the court make a finding that that’s actually really necessary: that’s the least restrictive thing that the court can do in order to have You released back into the community.
Finally, if you’re accused of violating any of these conditions then you shouldn’t be the one waiting round in court for weeks waiting for the state or waiting for your attorney to file a motion that you should be released: it’s the state’s burden to bring in the evidence as to why you violated these pre-trial release conditions.
If you have any of these problems contact my office we can help you out with that we can tell you more. Thank you