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Bernalillo County Metropolitan Court

Tribunal Metropolitano del Condado de Bernalillo

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What is felony first appearance?

Felony first appearances are held within 48 hours of the incarceration of a defendant charged with a felony. At this hearing, the defendant can review the charges against him or her and learn about the possible penalties. The judge reviews the complaint for probable cause (to determine if there were reasonable grounds for the arrest) and to set conditions of release, including bond or release on own recognizance. Depending on whether the defendant is in custody, out of custody or likely to make bond, the judge will also set a deadline for grand jury indictment (or preliminary hearing) on the charges.

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