This opinion will be unpublished and

may not be cited except as provided by

Minn. Stat. § 480A.08, subd. 3 (2004).






State of Minnesota,





Jerald Lawrence Geyen,



Filed June 28, 2005


Parker, Judge*


Wright County District Court

File No. K9-03-970


Mike Hatch, Attorney General, 1800 NCL Tower, 445 Minnesota Street, St. Paul, MN  55101-2134; and


Thomas N. Kelly, Wright County Attorney, Anne L. Mohaupt, Assistant County Attorney, Wright County Government Center, Ten Second Street N.W., Buffalo, MN  55313 (for respondent)


David T. Redburn, 8525 Edinbrook Crossing, Suite 207, Brooklyn Park, MN  55443 (for appellant)


            Considered and decided by Kalitowski, Presiding Judge; Toussaint, Chief Judge; and Parker, Judge.

U N P U B L I S H E D   O P I N I O N


            On March 26, 2003, appellant Jerald Geyen was charged with two counts of first-degree controlled-substance crime.  The district court set bond at $20,000, and listed as part of his conditions of release that appellant have no use or possession of controlled substances and submit to random testing.  Appellant reappeared before the district court on January 7, 2004, after testing positive for amphetamines.  Appellant subsequently posted cash bail in the amount of $20,000, and was released from jail on the condition that he have no use or possession of controlled substances and have no missed or positive tests.  At the time of his release, appellant also executed a consent in which he acknowledged that $20,000 in bail money would be forfeited should he test positive for controlled substances.

            On February 25, 2004, appellant provided a urine sample for drug testing that tested positive for methamphetamines and amphetamines.  Following a hearing on the matter, the district court found that appellant violated the terms and conditions of his release by testing positive for controlled substances.  The district court also noted that since his initial arrest, appellant had tested positive for controlled substances on 22 prior tests.  The district court, therefore, ordered the forfeiture of appellant’s $20,000 cash bail.  Appellant argues that because he obtained an independent test showing that he had not used controlled substances, his violation of the conditions of release was not proven by a preponderance of the evidence.  We affirm.


            This court reviews the district court’s denial of a motion to reinstate, discharge, and refund forfeited bail bonds for an abuse of discretion.  State v. Storkamp, 656 N.W.2d 539, 541 (Minn. 2003).  A district court abuses discretion when the ruling is based on an erroneous view of the law.  Id.

            Trial courts must set bail according to standards relevant to assuring the defendant’s presence.  Stack v. Boyle, 342 U.S. 1, 5, 72 S. Ct. 1, 4 (1951).  Moreover, courts have discretion to impose conditions of release which will reasonably assure the appearance of the person for trial or hearing.  Minn. R. Crim. P. 6.02, subd. 1.  “So long as the conditions of release are pertinent to the offense charged and to assuring the defendant’s presence, nothing prohibits the defendant from agreeing to forfeiture for violation of a condition upon his pretrial release.”  State v. Dillon, 529 N.W.2d 387, 394 (Minn. App. 1995), remanded on other grounds, 532 N.W.2d 558 (Minn. 1995). 

            Here, appellant argues that the district court abused discretion in ordering the forfeiture of his cash bail because his violation of the conditions of release was not proven by a preponderance of the evidence.  We disagree.  The evidence shows that the urine sample that appellant provided on February 25, 2004, tested positive for controlled substances, which was a direct violation of the terms and conditions of appellant’s release.  Although appellant provided testimony at the evidentiary hearing concerning an independent test that consisted of hair clippings collected on March 11, 2004, that tested negative for controlled substances, the district court apparently found this evidence to be less persuasive and less credible than the urine sample collected two weeks earlier by the Wright County probation officers.  See In re Welfare of S.A.M., 570 N.W.2d 162, 167 (Minn. App. 1997) (stating that the credibility of witness testimony and the weight given to the evidence are issues for the district court’s determination).  Thus, a preponderance of the evidence shows that appellant violated the terms and conditions of release. 

            Appellant also contends that because it was his first violation, the forfeiture of the entire bail was disproportionate to the violation.  But the record reflects that the district court gave appellant numerous opportunities to comply with the conditions of release.  Despite these opportunities, appellant continuously violated the terms and conditions of his release as demonstrated by the fact that appellant tested positive for controlled substances on 22 prior tests.  The record also reflects that on January 7, 2004, appellant executed a consent which states:

            I Jerald Lawrence Geyen, understand that the $20,000 in additional bail that has been posted on my behalf today, January 7, 2004, by Ed Duarte will be forfeited should I violate any of the conditions of the attached order including, but not limited to, the following:

            1.         No use or possession of controlled substance or marijuana; or

            2.         No missed or positive tests for controlled substances.


Thus, the record reflects that appellant knew that if he violated the terms of his release one more time, he would forfeit the $20,000 in cash bail.  We therefore conclude that the district court did not abuse discretion in ordering the forfeiture of appellant’s cash bail. 


* Retired judge of the Minnesota Court of Appeals, serving by appointment pursuant to Minn. Const. art. VI, § 10.