Bail Reform Information
Understanding the Bail Reform Movement:
As various jursidictions contemplate reforming their criminal justice system and limiting the use of financially secured release, Texas Bail News in conjunction with the Professional Bondsmen of Texas want to ensure that people have the proper resources and information available to them including the pros and cons of these so called reforms.
Criminal justice reform is not a new concept, it has surfaced over the years in various forms. First in the 1960s, next the 1990s and most recently, the so called third generation of bail reform, 2016 to the present. While this is the third generation of this reform effort, nothing has really changed. The proposed solution of reducing the use of "money bail" in favor of taxpayer funded pretrial services agencies and FREE releases are just as ineffective today as they were 50 years ago. The reason that the use of commercial bail as grown over the alternatives has nothing to do with the deep pockets and lobbying efforst of the bail bond industry, but rather evertything to do with the effectiveness of financially secured release. For a Criminal Justice System to function, there has to be a system which ensures that Defendants will come to court. Otherwise, the Criminal Justice System will not be able to function. The evidence is overwhelming and hard to ignore. Financially secured release works and it works extremely well.
We invite you to spend some time with the information below. This information provides some insight into the bail reform debate as well as highlights some of the misconceptions of commercial bail as well as someo the recent failures of the reform movement. The topics include the following:
How does the pretrial release process work? When someone is arrested (in states that operate with commercial bail), a determination is made as to the type of retrial release that will be considered based on the severlity ofthe charge. For low level offenses, defendants are often cited and relased or released on their own recognizance.
In most discussions about Bail Reform there is often the mention of "validated" risk assessments as a tool in determining the pretrial release of criminal defendants. Proponents of bail reform tout them as the panacea to the ills in the criminal justice sytem.
The proponents of Bail Reform argue that the current system of bail is unconstitutional; and therefore, it must be changed. This is not true. No court has held that bail is unconstitutional. To the contrary, secure bail is the most reliable option for ensuring people attend court. Therefore, it is important to know the costs of the changes being advocted by our liberal friends.