Colorado Rights Blog

SB20-161:Pretrial Release

Criminal Legal Reform
Bill Number: SB20-161
Year: 2020
ACLU Position: Support
Sponsors: L. Herod / M. Soper /P. Lee / R. Gardner


The bill requires each judicial district to implement a pretrial
release assessment process to assess arrested persons as soon as
practicable but no later than 24 hours after admission to a detention
facility. Each judicial district shall also adopt written criteria in an
administrative order allowing for the immediate pretrial release of certain
arrested persons on a summons or an unsecured personal recognizance
bond without any monetary condition after a pretrial release assessment
is completed and without an initial hearing before the court. The division
of criminal justice in the department of public safety (DCJ) shall develop
statewide standards and guidelines for the development of the pretrial
release assessment process, the written criteria for immediate pretrial
release, and standards for the setting of the type of bond and conditions
of release. The DCJ shall also compile an inventory of approved pretrial
risk assessment instruments available for use in Colorado. By October 1,
2022, and every October 1 thereafter, the DCJ shall evaluate the outcome
of the bond setting process, including the type of bond set, the amount of
any secured or unsecured monetary condition of bond, and any other
conditions of release, if available, for bias on the basis of race, ethnicity,
or gender by judicial district. Beginning April 1, 2021, if a person is not
released without a monetary bond pursuant to an administrative order, the
court shall hold a hearing as soon as practicable to determine bond and
the conditions of release. The bill creates a presumption that a person will
be released without any monetary conditions of release. The court is
required to use specified criteria in determining the bond and conditions
of release. The bill specifies the types of bond that the court can order
• An unsecured personal recognizance bond;
• An unsecured personal recognizance bond with additional
nonmonetary conditions of release;
• A bond with a monetary condition; or
• A bond with secured real estate conditions.
The bill specifies the required conditions of release and permissive
conditions of release.
The bill requires all counties to develop a pretrial services program
by April 1, 2021, which is approved by the chief judge of the judicial
district where the county is located. The pretrial services program shall
use a pretrial risk assessment instrument approved by the DCJ. Each
pretrial services program shall provide an annual report to the department
of public safety, which shall provide a report to specified legislative
committees. The bill creates a pretrial services fund to provide counties
with funds to operate or assist in the operation of a pretrial services

Current Status:

Senate Committee on Judiciary Refer Amended to Appropriations (02/24/2020)
Introduced In Senate - Assigned to Judiciary (02/04/2020)

Return to Search Menu