ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - A requirement for an attorney to be present at initial bail review hearings before a district court commissioner is taking effect.
The requirement ordered by the state's highest court begins Tuesday.
The Court of Appeals ruled 4-3 last year that having an attorney at an initial bail hearing is a constitutional right. Lawmakers were unable to reach an agreement on how to overhaul the state's bail system in the last legislative session to address the ruling. Instead, lawmakers put $10 million in the budget to pay for attorneys.
Gov. Martin O'Malley has created a commission to examine best practices around the country and to evaluate the use of a risk-assessment system to help determine who should be detained and who should be released before trial.