Is There No Indictment After 180 Days Mississippi? 4 Great Hints for You

Is there no indictment after 180 days Mississippi? Mississippi does not impose a time limit on when police may charge someone with a felony, making early legal advice key for successful representation in court proceedings.

If 180 days pass without indictments being brought against someone, their case generally ends – however that doesn’t preclude future charges being filed by the government.

Statute of Limitations

In most states, the government only has a set amount of time before losing its ability to formally charge you with a crime formally; this period is known as the Statute of Limitations. This rule protects innocent people from being accused of crimes for which there is no evidence; time can dull witnesses’ memories and degrade physical proof, making prosecution more difficult – not only that but forcing our courts to uncover truth when reliable proof has gone missing could also be unfairly taxing.

However, the 180-day rule doesn’t always apply in every instance and certain crimes might not even require that much time to pass before prosecution can begin.

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If an indictment has not been filed within 180 days, a court may choose to drop or reduce the case to misdemeanor status and release any restrictions placed upon their freedom by bond. In such an instance, jail time will likely be reduced or suspended altogether for suspects who no longer face criminal charges.

Misdemeanor charges carry a maximum one-year jail sentence in county jail, unlike more serious felony crimes that typically only require indictments and require stronger evidence against defendants than was originally presented to obtain an arrest. To charge someone with misdemeanor, new evidence must be presented that is stronger than what was used to indict them of the original felony crime.

Pre-Indictment Level

There are various rules in place pertaining to how long it will take the government to indict you, depending on where you reside and the nature of the case. Some jurisdictions require an indictment within 30 days after an arrest is made while other have more flexible timelines; in certain instances prosecutors may reduce felony charges to misdemeanors and file new information or indictments to save time and money.

However, the 180-day rule doesn’t always guarantee release from jail; due to legal regulations allowing the government to bring charges later even after 180 days have elapsed since your arrest – potentially for reasons such as double jeopardy and statute of limitations issues.

Experts note that Mississippi is among a few states which grant district attorneys unlimited time to file indictments, leading many defendants to be detained while they wait for their indictments. Experts argue this practice undermines Sixth Amendment rights to counsel while costing counties millions each year.

Mississippi recently passed a new law mandating courts provide indigent defendants access to lawyers during pre-indictment processes, which is an admirable step; however, implementation has been slow; according to Andre de Gruy, who heads Mississippi’s Office of Indigent Defense as an advocate for those without representation, only four out of 23 circuit courts have implemented this new policy so far.

Double Jeopardy

The Double Jeopardy Clause prohibits the government from prosecuting an individual twice for the same crime, with two notable exceptions being when charges have been dismissed or when too much time has passed since their original filing and therefore the statute of limitations has passed; either of these circumstances may allow a court to bring back the case later on.

Blackledge involved respondent’s initial charge with misdemeanor offense in Tallahatchie County Justice Court in Mississippi. After being found not guilty at trial by jury, he was then charged with manslaughter under manslaughter statute in Madison County trial court; trial court did not dismiss this felony charge as it considered it valid substitution for misdemeanor charge against respondent; respondent then initiated habeas corpus action before Federal District Court; this court adopted Magistrate Report ruling that substitution violated Double Jeopardy Clause before Court of Appeals upheld this conclusion on this basis alone.

In this case, the judge found it impossible to differentiate between criminal contempt and possession of cocaine due to both violations involving conditions of release, therefore declaring them identical offenses resulting in double jeopardy if Dixon were prosecuted for possession. Unfortunately, however, his judgment was founded upon an incorrect interpretation of law.


Criminal cases begin when the State files an accusation known as a “True Bill.” This document must identify both defendant and facts sufficient to apprise him/her of elements of crimes charged, jurisdiction of court, date and place of offense as well as signature of grand jury foreman and district attorney. If no probable cause exists for indictment being filed it can be dismissed immediately by either of these officials.

There are various grounds for dismissal of cases, including violations of statute of limitations or speedy trial rights, improper grand jury procedures or prosecutorial misconduct allegations, probable cause, lack of proof or evidence, etc. A court can also dismiss cases due to lack of evidence.

Conviction of a lesser offense also counts as a dismissal, for instance if a felony charge is dropped in favor of misdemeanor charge; such an outcome counts as dismissal under G.S. 15A-146 and may allow the criminal record to be expunged.

If a felony case does not result in an indictment within 180 days, it will be dismissed for lack of prosecution and dismissed outright. While this may not be ideal, it can save both you and the government time and money over the long haul – make sure you hire an experienced lawyer when dealing with this type of situation.