S. 1554 (97th): Bail Reform Act of 1981

Jul 31, 1981 (97th Congress, 1981–1982)
Died (Reported by Committee)
See Instead:

H.R. 5208 (same title)
Referred to Committee — Dec 14, 1981

Strom Thurmond
Senator from South Carolina
Related Bills
S. 215 (98th) was a re-introduction of this bill in a later Congress.

Passed Senate
Last Action: Feb 03, 1984

H.R. 5208 (identical)

Referred to Committee
Last Action: Dec 14, 1981


This bill was introduced on December 8, 1981, in a previous session of Congress, but was not enacted.

Introduced Jul 31, 1981
Referred to Committee Jul 31, 1981
Reported by Committee Dec 08, 1981
Full Title

A bill to amend the Bail Reform Act of 1966 to permit consideration of danger to the community in setting pretrial release conditions to eliminate surety bond, to permit pretrial detention of certain offenders, and for other purposes.


No summaries available.

8 cosponsors (4D, 4R) (show)

Senate Judiciary

The committee chair determines whether a bill will move past the committee stage.

Primary Source

THOMAS.gov (The Library of Congress)

GovTrack gets most information from THOMAS, which is updated generally one day after events occur. Activity since the last update may not be reflected here. Data comes via the congress project.


Get a bill status widget for your website »


Click a format for a citation suggestion:


S. stands for Senate bill.

A bill must be passed by both the House and Senate in identical form and then be signed by the president to become law.

The bill’s title was written by its sponsor.

GovTrack’s Bill Summary

We don’t have a summary available yet.

Library of Congress Summary

The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress.

3/4/1982--Reported to Senate amended.
(Reported to Senate from the Committee on the Judiciary with amendment, S. Rept. 97-317) Bail Reform Act of 1981 - Repeals the Bail Reform Act of 1966 and sets forth new bail procedures.
Retains execution of a money bond as a condition for pretrial release.
Authorizes a judicial officer to consider the safety of any person or the community when making a pretrial release determination.
Establishes as a mandatory release condition that the person not commit a Federal, State, or local crime during release.
Expands the discretionary release conditions to include that the defendant:
(1) maintain employment or an educational program;
(2) avoid contact with an alleged victim or potential witness;
(3) report to a law enforcement or pretrial service agency;
(4) comply with a curfew;
(5) refrain from possessing a firearm or using alcohol or narcotic drugs;
(6) undergo medical treatment;
(7) agree to forfeit designated property, including money, upon failure to appear; and
(8) return to custody at specified hours.
Prohibits a judicial officer from imposing financial conditions that result in the pretrial detention of a person.
Authorizes a judicial officer to order the detention for up to ten days of a person who is presently on pretrial release for a felony under Federal, State, or local law or on probation or parole or release pending sentencing or appeal for any offense, upon a determination that such person may flee or pose a danger to any person or the community.
Requires that a detention hearing be held in any case involving:
(1) a crime of violence;
(2) any offense punishable by life imprisonment or death; or
(3) a narcotics offense punishable by at least ten years' imprisonment.
Permits the Government or the court to move for a detention hearing in any other case involving:
(1) a serious risk of flight or obstruction of justice; or
(2) any felony committed after the person has been convicted of two or more offenses for which a hearing is mandated.
Authorizes a judicial officer after such a hearing to order the pretrial detention of a person upon finding that no condition will reasonably assure such person's appearance and the safety of any other person and the community.
Creates certain rebuttable presumptions with regard to absence of such conditions.
Enumerates additional factors to be considered by the judicial officer in making a release determination, including the defendant's past conduct, history of drug or alcohol abuse, criminal history, and the nature and seriousness of the danger to the community or any person.
Requires the detention of a person who has appealed his conviction unless the judicial officer finds by clear and convincing evidence that:
(1) such person is not likely to flee or pose a danger to another person or property; and
(2) the appeal raises a substantial question of law or fact.
Requires the detention of a person awaiting sentencing unless the officer finds by clear and convincing evidence that the person is not likely to flee or pose a danger to any other person or the community.
Authorizes a U.S. attorney to appeal a release order.
Makes a person guilty of an offense for failing to appear after having been released.
Provides increased penalties for persons charged with more serious offenses.
Makes it an affirmative defense to such crime that uncontrollable circumstances prevented the person from appearing.
Establishes mandatory additional penalties for commission of an offense while on pretrial release.
Subjects a person who has been conditionally released and violates a condition of release to revocation or release and prosecution for contempt of court.
Authorizes a surety to arrest a person charged with an offense who is released upon execution of an appearance bond with such surety.
Requires such person to be delivered promptly to a judicial officer for a revocation determination.
Grants new authority to law enforcement officers to arrest a person who violates pretrial release conditions.

House Republican Conference Summary

The summary below was written by the House Republican Conference, which is the caucus of Republicans in the House of Representatives.

No summary available.

House Democratic Caucus Summary

The House Democratic Caucus does not provide summaries of bills.

So, yes, we display the House Republican Conference’s summaries when available even if we do not have a Democratic summary available. That’s because we feel it is better to give you as much information as possible, even if we cannot provide every viewpoint.

We’ll be looking for a source of summaries from the other side in the meanwhile.

Use the comment space below for discussion of the merits of S. 1554 (97th) with other GovTrack users.
Your comments are not read by Congressional staff.

comments powered by Disqus