Can I be released on bail without seeing a judge?
In certain circumstances, the police have the ability to release an accused person where charges have been laid. Where it is not possible for the police to release an individual, then an appearance will be required in front of a justice of the peace, or a judge.
Where the police are able to release an accused person, then typically they will be released by way of what is called an appearance notice requiring the person to attend court on a particular date without an additional requirement to abide by conditions. An undertaking is another form of release that a police officer can issue, and which would require the person to abide by certain conditions.
Obviously, there are a lot of advantages to being released by a police officer including not having to be taken to the Arrest Processing Unity (Calgary), and not having to spend up to 24 hours in custody while waiting for your appearance in front of a justice of the peace. Being released by an officer typically takes less time as well, meaning there is less of a chance that the person would run the risk of having to miss work.
I am often able to coordinate a client’s surrender to police and to make arrangements, where possible, to have the client released on an appearance notice. This can be very helpful in that I am able to schedule a meeting between the client and the officer that is mutually agreeable. It is also helpful to have release and any potential conditions pre-arranged so there are no surprises.