Why People Charged with Sex Crimes are Walking Out of Arizona Jails

Due to a recent decision by the Arizona Court of Appeals, people charged with sex crimes are walking out of Arizona jails, predominantly in Phoenix. To understand why this is occurring, some historical context is helpful.

  • In 2002, Arizona voters approved a measure holding people charged with sex crimes such as child molestation, sexual conduct with a minor, and sexual assault held without bail

  • In a 2003 decision, Simpson v. Owens (Simpson I ), an Arizona appellate court found that in order to hold someone without bail, prosecutor need to show that the “proof is evident or the presumption great” that the offense was committed.

The Recent Change in the Law

On June 14, 2016, the Arizona Court of Appeals held that in addition to showing that proof is evident or the presumption great that offense was committed, prosecutors need to also show that the person charged is a danger to the community and that there are no release conditions that would protect the community. The Court found that without this additional requirement, the existing Arizona law, as written, was unconstitutional.

The facts underlying the case involved the same Mr. Simpson who was at the center of the 2003 case. This new decision, Simpson v. Miller, has become known as Simpson II.

How Is This Playing Out in Phoenix Courts

According to an Arizona Supreme Court filing, in Phoenix alone, 534 defendants were being held without bond for sex crimes. Jason Lamm has represented thousands of clients charged with serious felony offenses in his 20+ year career. He has filed to seek the release of numerous clients under the new law, and has already been successful in doing so.

Prosecutors are trying their best to drag their heels, kicking and screaming about the new law so that people charged with sex crimes can’t get out of jail. But as Jason Lamm stated in a recently filed argument opposing prosecutor’s stall tactics, Arizona law requires a bail hearing for someone held without bail, to be held within 7 days. If prosecutors are not prepared, as many are not, defendants must be immediately released.

Let Our Phoenix Criminal Defense Lawyer Protect Your Rights

If you are under investigation for a sex crime, or if someone you know is incarcerated for a sex crime in Phoenix (Maricopa County) or some other location in Arizona, Jason Lamm can help make sure that your rights are protected by getting you the bail hearing that you are entitled to and by keeping prosecutors from blocking your right to be free pending trial.

Jason Lamm has always been on the cutting edge of new laws and court decisions and has used them to obtain exceptional results for his clients, not just in sex crimes, but also in white collar offenses, drug trafficking crimes, and also violent crimes.

Call today at (602) 663-9100 for a confidential and personal consultation.

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