Violations of Pre-Trial Release
After an arrest in Pinellas County, the court might impose special conditions of pre-trial release. If you violate those pre-trial release conditions, then the court can issue an “order directing the clerk to issue a capias and hold the defendant without bond.”
If a capias or arrest warrant is issued, then officers with the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office or a local police department might come to your home to arrest you if you don’t immediately surrender at the jail.
The docket might show a notation for “ORDER TO ISSUE CAPIAS & BOND SET / HOLD DEFENDANT WITHOUT BOND.”
The subject charge report on the website for the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office might show the person being rearrested on the original charges with a notation for “Charge Status: AWAITING TRIAL” and “Arrest Type: WARRANT – CONTEMPT.”
In other cases, the prosecutor might file a “motion to revoke bond” for a violation of the pre-trial release conditions, especially when a new crime is committed.
The motion to revoke bond might also be filed if you are accused of violating the continuous alcohol monitoring “CAM” or a Secure Continuous Remote Alcohol Monitoring “SCRAM” program.
After an accusation of violating the pre-trial release conditions, you need an experienced criminal defense attorney to help you fight the accusations and resolve the underlying charges on the best possible terms.
Attorney for Violations of Pre-trial Release in Pinellas
If you want to remove a pretrial release condition like the SCRAM or CAM monitor or were accused of violating the conditions of your pre-trial release in Pinellas County, FL, then contact an experienced criminal defense attorney.
Our attorneys represent clients accused of violating pre-trial release in the Sixth Judicial Circuit in Pinellas County at the courthouse in Clearwater, FL.
If you were mistakenly accused of violating a condition of pre-trial release, the attorneys at Sammis Law Firm can file a motion to vacate the order on the charge of violation of pretrial release so that you might avoid going into custody.
Or we can appear with you at the first appearance advisory hearing the next morning after your arrest to ask the court to release you ROR or provide other relief.
If you are not given a bond, we can file a motion for an emergency bond hearing in front of the judge assigned to the case. While we are fighting for your release from custody under the best possible terms, we can also help you fight the underlying charges to resolve the case on the best possible terms.
We also represent clients accused of tampering with an electronic monitoring device, a third-degree felony under Section 843.23.
To discuss your case, call 813-250-0500.
Office of the Pinellas County Pre-Trial Services
In Pinellas County, pretrial services are managed by the Pinellas County Sheriff’s office instead of a program managed by the court or a county agency.
The office of Pre-Trial Services in Pinellas County is located in the Pinellas County Justice Center, 14250 49th Street North, Suite 1300, Clearwater, FL 33762. Except on holidays, the office is open on Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
After the arrest, the booking deputies have the option of setting either the recommended bond or a higher or lower bond depending on the circumstances. The low bond can include releasing the defendant on his or her own recognizance (also known as “ROR”).
In exchange for the lower bond or ROR, the court might impose additional pre-trial release conditions such as a continuous alcohol monitoring “CAM” or a Secure Continuous Remote Alcohol Monitoring “SCRAM” program. Other types of pre-trial release conditions can include a GPS monitor.
CAM or SCRAM Monitor as a Condition of Pretrial Release
Recently, judges in Pinellas County have started ordering that the defendant wear a SCRAM as a condition of their release.
The judge is most likely to order the CAM or SCRAM monitor when a person accused of DUI when:
- the DUI resulted in a crash involving property damage;
- the person has a prior DUI conviction or other alcohol-related charges;
- a child passenger was found in the vehicle; or
- the BAC was over .20 or even .15.
Most recently, the judges have even started ordering the CAM or SCRAM for non-alcohol related offenses such as domestic violence battery.
The devices manufactured by SCRAM Systems technologies were recently purchased by the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office. In Pinellas County, the sheriff’s office has the task of monitoring individuals on pretrial release and while on misdemeanor probation.
The sheriff’s office is charging an administrative fee of $10 per day for individuals ordered to wear the device. Since the average DUI takes more than 6 months to resolve, being required to wear the SCRAM device is extremely expensive.
Additionally, the people most likely to be required to wear the CAM or SCRAM monitor are those who are least likely to be able to afford it.
Any person who bonds out of jail prior to the advisory or first appearance hearing will not have that requirement. People who have a hard time bonding out are therefore more likely to be required to wear the CAM or SCRAM monitor.
If you are accused of tampering with the CAM or SCRAM device, you can be charged with TAMPERING WITH AN ELECTRONIC MONITORING DEVICE which is third-degree felony under Section 843.23.
Sample Motion to Remove a Pretrial Release Condition
The judge assigned to your case can remove the requirement that you wear the continuous alcohol monitoring device or SCRAM if your attorney files a “motion to remove” that pretrial release condition. We have included a sample of the motion that can be used to remove the SCRAM or CAM monitor below.
IN THE COUNTY COURT FOR THE SIXTH JUDICIAL CIRCUIT
IN AND FOR PINELLAS COUNTY, FLORIDA
STATE OF FLORIDA,
MOTION TO REMOVE CONTINUOUS ALCOHOL MONITOR
The Defendant, by and through undersigned counsel, respectfully requests this Honorable Court to enter an Order Remove Continuous Alcohol Monitor (“CAM”), and as grounds for this motion the Defendant would show:
- On ______, the Defendant was arrested for the following charges: ______________________.
- As part of the pretrial release requirements, the Defendant was ordered by the court to be fitted with a Continuous Alcohol Monitor (“CAM”), prior to her release from Pinellas County Jail.
- The purpose of the Continuous Alcohol Monitor (“CAM”) was to ensure that Defendant was not consuming alcohol during the pretrial period of the case.
- As of this date, the Defendant has not had any instances of alcohol use for thirty (30) days.
- Additionally, [because Defendant is indigent], the cost of the Continuous Alcohol Monitor is a financial burden on the Defendant.
- The Defendant has already completed Level I or Level II DUI school and had the evaluation to determine whether additional counseling is required.
- [List any other mitigating factors unique to the case].
WHEREFORE, for the above mentioned reasons, the Defendant respectfully requests this Honorable Court reconsideration of the pretrial release requirement that the Defendant wear a Continuous Alcohol Monitor (CAM) and delete that requirement from the pre-trial release conditions.
[enter attorney’s signature line]
NOTICE OF HEARING
YOU ARE NOTIFIED that the above will be heard before the Honorable [Judge’s Name], Pinellas County Justice Center, 14250 49th Street North Clearwater, FL 33762 on [date] at [time] in Courtroom [number] on the [number] floor of the courthouse.
I do certify that a copy hereof has been furnished by email/physical delivery to the State Attorney, County Justice Center, Clearwater, Florida, on August 12, 2019.
[enter attorney’s signature line]
Example – the Capias for CAM Pretrial Release Violations
For instance, a violation of pretrial release for a problem with the continuous alcohol monitoring “CAM” through the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office might result in the following type of order being entered:
IN THE CIRCUIT COURT OF THE SIXTH JUDICIAL CIRCUIT OF
THE STATE OF FLORIDA IN AND FOR PINELLAS COUNTY
ORDER DIRECTING CLERK TO ISSUE A CAPIAS AND HOLD DEFENDANT WITHOUT BOND
THIS CAUSE, come to be heard this day upon the Oral Motion and Testimony of ASU Specialist [name], Pretrial Services, and the Court having duly considered same.
IT IS ADJUDGED that the Clerk of the Circuit Court shall issue a Capias for the Arrest of the above named Defendant on the charge of Violation of Pretrial Release. To wit:
On [date], the Defendant was imposed a condition of CONTINUOUS ALCOHOL MONITORING “CAM” THROUGH PINELLAS COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE.
On ______ at [time], Defendant submitted for testing the results of which was a BREATH ALCOHOL CONCENTRATION (“BrAC”) of 0.___.
At [time] on [date], Defendant submitted for confirmation testing the result of which was a BREATH ALCOHOL CONCENTRATION (“BrAC”) of 0.___.
This above and foregoing is in direct violation of the Conditions entered by this Court on [date]. The foregoing further violates the SCRAM Remote Breath Program Participant Agreement as executed by this Defendant on [date].
Done and Ordered at Clearwater, Pinellas County, Florida, this 12th day of August, 2019.
Circuit / County Court Judge in Pinellas County
BOND TO BE SET AT: ZERO BOND
cc: Court File
When the capias is returned served, the clerk of court will attach a personal data information sheet that must be provided by the investigating officer for computer warrant entries.
The Personal Data Information Sheet includes the defendant’s name, SSN, SID#, last known address, place of employment, date of birth, sex, race, height, weight, hair color, and eye color.
According to FLCrRule 3.121, a photo will be attached with a SOPICS preferred. This form is usually completed by the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office and will list the ASU specialist acting as the investigating officer.
Evidence of SCRAM CAM Violations
If you are accused of drinking alcohol while wearing a SCRAM CAM, then a SCRAM System Non-Compliance Report might be issued. The report is prepared by Alcohol Monitoring Systems, Inc. The most common alert status in these reports is “alert has been determined to be a confirmed violation.”
The report explains the SCRAM Technology as follows:
The SCRAM System uses an electrochemical fuel cell to detect alcohol. The fuel cell is the same one used in Drager’s Alco-test BreathDevices.
At a predetermined interval, a pump in the [Bracelet] pulls a controlled sample to the alcohol sensor for analysis. The amount of reaction of the fuel cell is interpreted and a Trans-dermal Alcohol Concentration (TAC) is calculated.
This calculation is an estimation of the Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC).
Tamper Technology is contained within the [Bracelet] and is used to detect several different types of tampers: obstructions, removals, cut straps
The technology used to detect removals and obstruction material is the Infrared (IR) sensor. Combinations of the IR sensor, temperature sensor and the fuel cell voltage can be used to confirm obstructions and removals.
The IR sensor is used to make certain the [Bracelet] is on the client and to detect materials being placed between the [Bracelet] and the leg, potentially blocking the faceplate. The IR sensor, which is contained in the SCRAM [Bracelet], provides an IR beam between the [Bracelet] and the leg of the client; the reflection of this beam is then measured in volts.
The temperature sensor monitors the [Bracelet] temperature to detect possible tampers and removals. The temperature sensor is located in the [Bracelet], thus impacted by the body’s warming effect and the environmental temperature.
The Data Interpretation part of the report provides:
The Trans-dermal Alcohol Concentration (TAC) readings are the black line and are represented on the scale to the left of the graph. The Infrared (IR) readings are identified on the light blue line and the temperature readings are displayed on the red line and represented by the scale on the right of the graph.
The Confirmed Consumption portion of the report provides:
Alcohol detections confirmed as consumption identify the Transdermal Curve and include both the presence of absorption to the peak with an absorption rate less than 0.10% per hour, and the presence of elimination with an elimination rate less than or equal to 0.035%
The graph below isolates the confirmed alcohol consumption event.
Pre-Trial Services at the Pinellas County Justice Center – Visit the website of the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office to learn more about Judicial Operations and the office of Alternative Sentencing / Pre-Trial Services. With an After Hours Message Line, Supervised ROR Check-In, and Adult Pre-Arrest Diversion Program, the Alternative Sentencing Unit supervises pre-arrest, pre-trial and sentenced offenders who must abide by certain court-ordered restrictions while released in the community. Pre-trial release conditions include weekly communications, random drug screenings or home confinement. The court might also impose a requirement monitored by pre-trial services that the person wears a GPS monitor and/or an alcohol monitoring device such as a Continuous Alcohol Monitoring (CAM).
This article was last updated on Friday, November 13, 2020.