The Pretrial Supervision Program is designed to aid the courts in the initial processing of defendants, reducing jail overcrowding, and upholding public safety. The program accomplishes these tasks through providing background information about defendants to the judiciary at court hearings as well as maintaining supervision of defendants awaiting trial.
An integral responsibility of the Pretrial Supervision Program is to provide background information to the courts on newly-arrested defendants to assist judges in the pretrial phase of the judicial process. Pretrial Interviewers/Investigation Officers screen defendants who are being held in the Prince William County Adult Detention Center awaiting their first court appearance. These officers collect and verify demographic information, criminal history and other information regarding substance abuse, mental health treatment and/or medical problems and assist defendants in the completion of court-appointed counsel forms. The Pretrial Interviewers/Investigation Officers conduct a risk assessment based on the information collected and make a recommendation to the courts in reference to a defendant’s bond. The defendant may be recommended for continued detention, pretrial supervision, a monetary secured bond and/or release with a promise to appear (Personal Recognizance Bond).
When defendants are ordered to pretrial supervision by the court, Pretrial Supervision Officers provide supervision until a final disposition is reached in the defendants' case and ensure compliance to additional conditions that are ordered by a judge. Defendants are released back into the community with the stipulation that they comply with these conditions while they are awaiting trial. Conditions may include:
Pretrial Officers' duties include:
Pretrial Supervision Officers monitor compliance with the conditions of release and report participant progress and/or violations to the courts. The Pretrial Supervision Program is used for both misdemeanor and felony defendants; the length of supervision varies between defendants based on numerous factors surrounding their court case. In the event of non-compliance, the judge may return the defendant to jail to await trial.
The Intensive Pretrial Supervision Program, established in Prince William County in July of 2006, was created with the initial task of further reducing jail crowding at the Prince William County Adult Detention Center. The Intensive Pretrial Supervision Officers screen defendants who remain incarcerated after their initial bond hearing and have a predicted detention stay of 90 days or more. The defendants are screened to determine if they are eligible to be returned to the community on house arrest or electronic monitoring while awaiting their trial. Eligibility for Intensive Pretrial Supervision is determined by the defendant’s risk level on the Virginia Pretrial Risk Assessment Instrument, resident status, employment status, and criminal history. After a defendant is screened utilizing these criteria, the information is provided to the court. If the court deems the case eligible, the defendant is ordered into the program under Intensive Pretrial Conditions. A defendant who participates in the Intensive Pretrial Supervision Program is released back into the community on electronic monitoring, and has specialized conditions based on their needs.