Code of the District of Columbia

§ 23–1329. Penalties for violation of conditions of release.

(a) A person who has been conditionally released pursuant to section 23-1321 and who has violated a condition of release shall be subject to revocation of release, an order of detention, including an order of temporary detention pursuant to subsections (d-1) and (e) of this section, and prosecution for contempt of court.

(a-1) In addition to any other penalty provided under this section, a person may be fined an amount not more than the amount set forth in [§ 22-3571.01].

(b)(1) Proceedings for revocation of release and temporary placement in custody may be initiated at the request of the Pretrial Services Agency, on motion of the prosecutor, or on the court’s own motion. A warrant for the arrest of a person charged with violating a condition of release may be issued by a judicial officer and if such person is outside the District of Columbia he shall be brought before a judicial officer in the district where he is arrested and shall then be transferred to the District of Columbia for proceedings in accordance with this section. No order of revocation and detention shall be entered unless, after a hearing, the judicial officer:

(A) Finds that there is:

(i) Probable cause to believe that the person has committed a federal, state, or local crime while on release; or

(ii) Clear and convincing evidence that the person has violated any other condition of his release; and

(B) Finds that:

(i) Based on the factors set out in § 23-1322(e), there is no condition or combination of conditions of release which will reasonably assure that the person will not flee or pose a danger to any other person or the community; or

(ii) The person is unlikely to abide by a condition or conditions of release.

(2) If there is probable cause to believe that while on release, the person committed a dangerous or violent crime, as defined by § 23-1331, or a substantially similar offense under the laws of any other jurisdiction, a rebuttable presumption arises that no condition or combination of conditions will assure the safety of any other person or the community.

(3) The provisions of § 23-1322(d) and (h) shall apply to this subsection.

(c) Contempt sanctions may be imposed if, upon a hearing and in accordance with principles applicable to proceedings for criminal contempt, it is established that such person has intentionally violated a condition of his release. Such contempt proceedings shall be expedited and heard by the court without a jury. Any person found guilty of criminal contempt for violation of a condition of release shall be imprisoned for not more than six months, or fined not more than the amount set forth in [§ 22-3571.01], or both. A judicial officer or a prosecutor may initiate a proceeding for contempt under this section.

(d) Any warrant issued by a judge of the Superior Court for violation of release conditions or for contempt of court, for failure to appear as required, or pursuant to § 23-1322(d)(7), may be executed at any place within the jurisdiction of the United States. Such warrants shall be executed by a United States marshal or by any other officer authorized by law.

(d-1)(1) A person who has been conditionally released and who violates a condition of that release by violating a stay-away order or an order to wear a detection device, may be ordered by the court, in addition to or in lieu of the penalties prescribed in subsections (a) through (d) of this section, to temporary placement in custody for a maximum of 72 hours, when, in the opinion of the court, such action is necessary to ensure compliance with the conditions of release.

(2) Paragraph (1) of this subsection shall apply only to a person who has been charged with an offense enumerated in § 23-1331(3) or (4); provided, that it shall not include offenses under § 23-1331(3)(B) or (C).

(e) A person who has been conditionally released and who violates a condition of that release by using a controlled substance or by failing to comply with the prescribed treatment for use of a controlled substance, may be ordered by the court, in addition to or in lieu of the penalties and procedures prescribed in subsections (a) through (d) of this section, to temporary placement in custody, when, in the opinion of the court, such action is necessary for treatment or to assure compliance with conditions of release. A person shall not be subject to an order of temporary detention under this subsection, unless before any such violation and order, the person has agreed in writing to the imposition of such an order as a sanction for the person’s violation of a condition of release.

(f)(1) Within 180 days of the effective date of this act [June 12, 2001], the Department of Corrections, in consultation with the Federal Bureau of Prisons, the Court Services and Offender Supervision Agency, and the Pretrial Services Agency, shall promulgate regulations, in accordance with [Chapter 5 of Title 2] to establish standards of conduct and discipline for persons released pursuant to § 23-1321(c)(1)(B)(xi). Such regulations shall set forth sanctions for different kinds of violations, up to and including revocation of release and detention.

(2) If a person who has been released pursuant to § 23-1321(c)(1)(B)(xi) violates a standard of conduct for which the sanction is revocation of release, the Department of Corrections may take the person into its custody or, if necessary, apply for a warrant for the person’s arrest.

(3) The Department of Corrections shall immediately notify the Superior Court of the District of Columbia (“the Court”) of the detention of the person and request an order for the person to be brought before the Court without unnecessary delay. An affidavit stating the basis for the person’s remand to the jail shall be filed forthwith with the Court.

(4) If, based on the affidavit described in paragraph (3) of this subsection, the Court finds probable cause to believe that the person violated a standard of conduct for which a sanction is revocation of release, it shall schedule a hearing for revocation of release under subsection (b) of this section and shall detain the person pending completion of the hearing.

(5) If, based on the affidavit described in paragraph (3) of this subsection, the Court does not find probable cause to believe that the person violated a standard of conduct for which the sanction is revocation of release, it shall order the release of the person with the original or modified conditions of release.


(July 29, 1970, 84 Stat. 649, Pub. L. 91-358, title II, § 210(a); July 3, 1992, D.C. Law 9-125, § 7, 39 DCR 2134; Oct. 10, 1998, D.C. Law 12-165,§ 3, 45 DCR 2980; June 12, 2001, D.C. Law 13-310, § 2(d), 48 DCR 1648; Oct. 26, 2001, D.C. Law 14-42, § 24, 48; June 11, 2013, D.C. Law 19-317, §§ 283(h), 311(b), 60 DCR 2064; June 30, 2016, D.C. Law 21-125, § 801, 63 DCR 4659.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 23-1329.

1973 Ed., § 23-1329.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 23-1303 and § 23-1322.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 12-165 added subsec. (e).

D.C. Law 13-310, rewrote subsec. (b) which had read:

“(b) Proceedings for revocation of release may be initiated on motion of the United States Attorney. A warrant for the arrest of a person charged with violating a condition of release may be issued by a judicial officer and if such person is outside the District of Columbia he shall be brought before a judicial officer in the district where he is arrested and shall then be transferred to the District of Columbia for proceedings in accordance with this section. No order of revocation and detention shall be entered unless, after a hearing, the judicial officer finds that—

“(1) there is clear and convincing evidence that such person has violated a condition of his release; and

“(2) based on the factors set out in § 23-1322(e), there is no condition or combination of conditions of release which will reasonably assure that such person will not flee or pose a danger to any other person or the community. The provisions of § 23-1322(d) and (h) shall apply to this subsection.”; in subsec. (c) added the last sentence; and added subsec. (f). D.C. Law 14-42, divided par. (1)(B)(ii) of subsec. (b) into two paragraphs, with the second sentence redesignated as “par. (2)”, and redesignated the existing par. (2) as par. (3).

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 19-317 added (a-1); and substituted “not more than the amount set forth in [§ 22-3571.01]” for “not more than $1,000” in (c).

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90-day) amendment of section, see § 2 of the Bail Reform Emergency Act of 1999 (D.C. Act 13-107, July 9, 1999, 46 DCR 6032).

For temporary (90-day) amendment of section, see § 2 of the Bail Reform Congressional Review Emergency Act of 1999 (D.C. Act 13-143, October 18, 1999, 46 DCR 9902).

For temporary (90-day) amendment of section, see § 2 of the Bail Reform Second Congressional Review Emergency Act of 1999 (D.C. Act 13-228, January 11, 2000, 47 DCR 485).

For temporary (90-day) amendment of section, see § 2 of the Bail Reform Emergency Act of 2000 (D.C. Act 13-414, August 14, 2000,

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see §§ 283(h) and 311(b) of the Criminal Fine Proportionality Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-45, April 1, 2013, 60 DCR 5400, 20 DCSTAT 1300).

Temporary Legislation

Section 2 of D.C. Law 13-50 inserted at the end of subsec. (b) “or the court’s own motion.”, and added at the end of subsec. (c) “A judicial officer or a prosecutor may initiate a proceeding for contempt under this section.”

Section 4 (b) of D.C. Law 13-50 provided that the act shall expire after 225 days of its having taken effect.

Section 2(a) of D.C. Law 13-304, in subsec. (b), inserted “or the court’s own motion” at the end of the first sentence. Section 2(b) of that law, in subsec. (c), inserted a new sentence at the end to read as follows: “A judicial officer or a prosecutor may initiate a proceeding for contempt under this section.”

Section 4(b) of D.C. Law 13-304 provided that the act shall expire after 225 days of its having taken effect.

Editor's Notes

Applicability of D.C. Law 19-317: Section 401 of D.C. Law 19-317 provided that the act shall apply only to offenses committed on or after June 11, 2013.