ORLANDO, Fla. — Prosecutors in Orange and Osceola counties will no longer request bail be set for people charged with minor offenses.
- Nonviolent people accused of minor offenses can be released from jail
- State Attorney's Office will no longer request bail be set
- Affects Orange, Osceola counties
- READ: The new bond policy from the State Attorney's Office (PDF)
State Attorney Aramis Ayala announced Wednesday that if a person is not a threat to the community or a flight risk, bail won't be necessary and the person should be released on their own recognizance.
Such crimes include:
- Possession of cannabis less than 20 grams
- Possession of drug paraphernalia
- Driving with a suspended license
- No valid driver's license
- Attaching tag not assigned to a vehicle
- No vehicle registration
- Disorderly intoxication/conduct
The new rule won't be advocated for crimes associated with domestic violence, stalking, firearms and dangerous felonies, the State Attorney said.
Ayala said the new rule is in keeping with Florida law, saying the law calls for "a presumption in favor of release on nonmonetary conditions" for nondangerous offenses.
The announcement appears to have the support of Chief Judge Fred Lauten, who said in the news release, "There is a national movement toward nonmonetary bond. One of the issues with monetary release is it benefits the wealthy while it is an impediment to people with lesser means."
Ayala said the Orange County Jail holds an average of 2,360 people a day. Of those, 1,806, or about 77 percent, are awaiting trial. Ayala said many of those cannot afford to post bond.