Wednesday, April 27, 2016
Understanding Habeas Corpus
As an Albuquerque-based attorney, Geoffrey Scovil provides criminal defense representation in a wide range of matters. Through his solo practice in Albuquerque, Geoffrey Scovil specializes in issues related to habeas corpus.
“Habeas corpus” is a Latin phrase that literally means “bring the body.” In law, habeas corpus in the principle that a person seized and jailed can demand to be brought before a neutral party, who will then determine whether there is a legitimate basis for that person’s detention.
The original purpose of habeas corpus was to provide a check on governmental power and to allay private citizens’ fear that they could be arrested and detained by the government for no reason. Habeas corpus is one of the foundational principles of the American criminal justice system, serving as a balance between law enforcement agencies entrusted with arrest powers and the right of the citizen to challenge an arrest before a judge.