WDA’s proposal to amend CrRLJ 7.6 (which governs misdemeanor probation) would limit the authority of courts of limited jurisdiction to detain people accused of probation violations. Courts can currently detain people arrested on alleged misdemeanor probation violations without considering release or bail. Under the proposal, courts would have to consider release pending a probation hearing using the same factors that govern pretrial release. Courts would also have to hold probation hearings for people unable to post bail within two weeks of arrest.
The proposal would make several additional improvements:
- People held in jail would have a right to be physically present at their probation hearings
- Courts could let people appear through counsel or remotely at routine scheduling hearings
- The rule would list constitutional rights of people accused of probation violations
- Judges could allow a court in another jurisdiction to supervise probation if a person convicted of a misdemeanor asks