Delaware Men Extradited After Pennsylvania Arrest
After being held for several months for crimes in Pennsylvania, two men suspected in a June 2017 robbery were extradited back to Delaware to face charges related to the same incident. According to a March 6, 2018 article from Internet news source Delaware Online, Delaware State Police were pursuing the pair after they allegedly robbed a cellphone store and fled in a black Mercedes Benz. In the chase, troopers crossed state lines and obtained assistance from Pennsylvania authorities in apprehending the men. The two suspects, hailing from Wilmington and New Castle, were extradited back to Delaware to face multiple robbery charges. An overview of the Delaware extradition process is helpful if you are involved in a similar situation.
What is Extradition?
Law enforcement officers and other officials are limited by geography in being able to legally use their powers, so they cannot exercise authority outside the boundaries of Delaware. It is necessary for officials to go through the legal process of extradition when they seek to prosecute an individual who is present in another state. There are two jurisdictions involved in the proceedings:
- The Asylum State, where the accused person is present; and,
- The Demanding State, which is seeking to exercise jurisdiction over the individual for purposes of the criminal process.
How does an Extradition Work?
The proceedings start with the officials in the state of Delaware making a demand that complies with the extradition statute, which requires it to:
- Be in writing;
- Include allegations that the accused was present in Delaware at the time of committing a criminal offense;
- State that the suspect fled the state; and,
- Be accompanied by a copy of a criminal indictment or supported by a sworn statement, known as an affidavit. The indictment or affidavit must include details regarding the charges against the individual.
The demand is then sent to Delaware Governor, who will execute an arrest warrant upon a determination that the document is legally sufficient. From there, the office forwards the arrest warrant to authorities in the asylum state.
What Happens after Extradition?
Once the asylum state receives the arrest warrant, they may hold a person who is already in custody, as in the case of the two Delaware men that Pennsylvania officials detained. If the accused individual is not in custody, authorities in the asylum state can act on an arrest warrant if the person is arrested on other charges. The law does allow the asylum state to pursue charges and keep the detainee until the conclusion of criminal proceedings. Then, the asylum state must deliver the suspect to Delaware officials.
Still, you would not be immediately imprisoned once you are back in Delaware’s control. You do have the opportunity to defend the charges and the extradition process.
Seek Solid Legal Representation from a Delaware Criminal Defense Attorney
As you can see, the extradition process is highly technical and there are many potential mistakes officials can make along the way. It may be possible to beat the extradition process, which has significant implications for the underlying charges. If you would like to know more about your legal options in an extradition matter, please contact Wilmington, DE Attorney Michael W. Modica to set up a free consultation.