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Own Recognizance Release

Sep 28, 2021 | Criminal Law

What Does Own Recognizance Mean?

Own recognizance means to be released without having to pay bail with the promise that the released individual will show up on their court date. Specifically, an individual will be required to sign an agreement stating that:

  • They will appear in court when ordered to do so;
  • Obey all conditions imposed by the court;
  • Not leave the state without permission.

Who Is Eligible for Own Recognizance?

The following factors are taken into consideration to determine if an individual is eligible for his own recognizance:

  • Whether the individual has strong roots in the community;
  • Whether the individual has regular employment;
  • The severity of the crime;
  • The individual’s criminal record;
  • Whether the individual poses a danger to the public if released

Does an Own Recognizance Require a Formal Hearing?

Yes, specific offenses require a formal adversarial hearing should such offenses fall under Penal Code 1270. These offenses include:

  • Serious felonies such as rape, assault with a deadly weapon or murder;
  • Violent felonies;
  • Violation of a protective order, which includes violence, serious threat of harm, or the individual goes to the home or workplace of the person whom the protective order is for;
  • Violation of domestic battery law;
  • Violation of witness intimidation laws, such that is defined under Penal Code 136.1

Are There Any Conditions Associated with an Own Recognizance?

Yes, as mentioned above, there are certain conditions that an individual must agree to should they be released on their own recognizance. These requirements are listed under Penal Code 1318. It is important to keep in mind that these conditions must remain reasonable both to the charges pending against the individual as well as taking into account the goal of public safety.

Additionally, the individual may also have to agree to other conditions such as:

  • Attending Alcoholics Anonymous meetings;
  • Attending Narcotics Anonymous meetings;
  • Receive mental health treatment;
  • Receive substance abuse treatment;
  • Home detention;
  • Electronic monitoring.

Are There Consequences Connected with Own Recognizance Release?

Yes, being released on own recognizance may trigger investigators, who are court staff members, to look into an individual to determine what the individual’s character is and whether the individual has a strong connection to their community and if they are a flight risk. However, an investigation into the individual is mandatory should the individual face charges of a violent felony or driving under the influence (DUI) that resulted in great bodily injury.

Los Angeles Criminal Defense Attorney

If you or someone you know has been released on your own recognizance or is currently in jail and would like to be released, please contact our Los Angeles criminal defense attorney at 310-933-5171 for a free consultation.