Georgia preliminary hearings (also called commitment or committal hearings)
are interesting creatures. An accused who either has no bail bond or is
unable to afford bond and who requests a preliminary hearing is
entitled to a hearing. However, the posting of bail bond constitutes a
waiver of the right to a preliminary hearing.
At a preliminary hearing, evidence must be presented by the
prosecutor and can be presented by defendant. Guilt or innocence is
not an issue at a preliminary hearing. The only issue is whether or
not sufficient legal reason exists to bind the case over for trial.
The following links will take you to excerpts from materials I
prepared for a lecture to new attorneys. It contains some legalese,
but should answer most of your questions involving preliminary
hearings and their importance.
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