Pre-Trial Services

Chuck Modders, Director of Pre-Trial Services

Chuck Modders, Director

Phone: (863)534-4621            Fax: (863)534-4660

Staff and contact information

History

Funded in 1981 by the Polk Board of County Commissioners, Pre-Trial Services was established to help alleviate overcrowding at the Polk County Jails.  Pre-Trial Services saves the county money by reducing the amount of time a defendant spends in the county jail prior to trial.

Tax Dollars Saved

Year

Defendants Interviewed

Defendants Released
on Pre-Trial

2000 19,830  4,631
2001 20,018 4,412
2002 20,387 3,835
Based on the cost of $45.00 per day to house a defendant at the county jail, Pre-Trial Services provides the county a cost avoidance of approximately eleven (11) million dollars annually! 

How it Works

Pre-Trial Services has three primary functions.

Screening


An interviewer screens newly arrested defendants that are booked in at the county jail.  The interviewer then makes a recommendation to the judge assigned to hear first appearance hearings of whether the defendant should be released or detained.  The judge, although not required to do so, follows the recommendation of Pre-Trial most of the time.


Background Investigations


Pre-Trial Services is responsible for the background investigations of defendants upon book-in at the jail.  If the judge is going to consider releasing these defendants at their first appearance hearing, which must be held within 24 hours of arrest, then the judge wants as much information as possible about the defendants.  Previous criminal records are checked, the seriousness of the current offense is assessed, an attempt is made to contact alleged victims, and the defendant's domestic and employment status are investigated. 


Supervision


Pre-Trial Services is responsible for the supervision of those defendants that are released to the program with special court ordered conditions which may include drug/alcohol evaluations, random urinalysis, anger management classes, domestic violence programs, psychological evaluations, curfews, house arrest and other recommendations.  A Supervised Release Officer is assigned to each case to ensure that the defendant complies with the court order. A defendant's failure to abide by the court ordered conditions results in the revocation of pre-trial release and the issuance of an arrest warrant. A defendant can remain on Pre-Trial release through the disposition of the charges.

Stacey Hoskins, Supervised Release Officer
Stacey Hoskins,
Supervised Release Officer

bsnead2.jpg (13283 bytes)
Barbara Snead,
Supervised Release Officer

Defendant Tracker Program  

In 1997, the Defendant Tracker Program was implemented as part of Pre-Trial Services.  The tracker office receives notice of all defendants who fail to appear for traffic, misdemeanor and felony arraignments in all branches within the Polk County Court System.  An arrest warrant is issued, and attempts are made to locate these defendants as soon after the failure to appear occurs to reschedule them for arraignment before the judge.  These defendants are informed that a warrant is outstanding for their arrest, which can be withdrawn if they appear before a judge on a date and time specified.  All warrants remain outstanding until they actually appear before the court.

TAX DOLLARS SAVED

Year Tracking Rate Savings to the County
2000 30% $1,472,283.00
2001 32% $1,561,199.00
2002 33% $1,594,748.00
These cost avoidance figures assume all the defendants successfully tracked and reset would have been arrested on their outstanding warrant prior to being reset for a court date.

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Updated 10/17/2003