A 72-hour hearing is supposed to happen within 72 hours of an arrest in Louisiana. It is at this hearing that counsel is appointed if you cannot afford to hire a private attorney. At this hearing, the court may also consider or review your bail amount. In some jurisdictions this appearance may be conducted via closed circuit television.
72-Hour Hearing Scheduling and Procedures
The Louisiana Code of Criminal Procedure provides that the law enforcement agency having custody of an arrested person shall bring him/her promptly, and in any case within 72 hours from the time of the arrest, before a judge for the purpose of appointment of counsel. Saturdays, Sundays and legal holidays are not included within the 72-our period. The defendant can appear in person, or if the court has local rules providing for such, by telephone or audio-video simulcast.
Who Must Attend?
If the defendant is incapacitated, unconscious or otherwise unable to appear in court within 72 hours, the defendant’s presence is waived by law, and the judge will appoint counsel to represent the defendant.
During the 72-hour hearing, the judge can determine the amount of bail to be set.
Was Protocol Followed?
If the arrested person is not brought before the judge in accordance with the Code of Criminal Procedure, he shall be released. This has no effect whatsoever upon the validity of the proceedings thereafter against the defendant.
If you have questions about your 72-hour hearing of want to know if you were arrested legally, contact the Law Office of J. Bradley Cockrell to schedule a free and confidential review of your case.