United States v. Montalvo-Murillo

Facts of the Case

Montalvo-Murillo was arrested on federal drug charges, and a Magistrate, at a detention hearing held after Montalvo-Murillo’s first appearance and after continuances granted beyond the period permitted by the Act, ordered his release on bond. The District Court, while finding that no conditions reasonably could assure his appearance or the community’s safety, held that the detention hearing had not been held upon Montalvo-Murillo’s first appearance and that pretrial release was the appropriate remedy for violation of the statutory requirement. The Court of Appeals affirmed. Upon issuance of the court’s mandate, Montalvo-Murillo was released, took flight, and remains at large. He is, however, represented by counsel before this Court. The United States Government challenged the


Did the district court err in holding that the defendant must be released as a remedy for the government’s failure to hold a timely detention hearing?


Yes. Justice Anthony M. Kennedy delivered the opinion for the 6-3 majority. The Court held that the Bail Reform Act (Act) does not require the government to remedy untimely proceedings by releasing someone who may pose a flight risk or endanger the community. Montalvo’s counsel argued that the government deviated from the time limits set forth in the Act