PORTLAND, Maine (AP) – Maine’s highest court says it will no longer consider a proposal asking to increase from 48 to 72 hours the maximum amount of time somebody can be held in jail before appearing before a judge.
The Maine Supreme Judicial Court said Wednesday it has withdrawn the proposal from consideration and canceled a public hearing on it.
The proposed change to Maine’s rules of criminal procedure was made by a committee of prosecutors and defense lawyers after hearing concerns raised by a sheriff who said he’s had to release arrestees simply because judge wasn’t available in the 48-hour time frame.
But criminal defense lawyers said initial court appearances should be made sooner than 48 hours, not later. Others said 72 hours appeared to be excessive and possibly unconstitutional.