Monday, November 28, 2016

Reform bail bond process, coalition urges Arkansas Supreme Court

Posted By on Mon, Nov 28, 2016 at 5:05 PM

click to enlarge NO DEBTOR'S PRISONS: The group says 'presumed innocence is being eroded' by bail bonds that are set without considering an individual's ability to pay. - DECARCERATE
  • DECARCERATE
  • NO DEBTOR'S PRISONS: The group says 'presumed innocence is being eroded' by bail bonds that are set without considering an individual's ability to pay.

A statewide coalition of organizations working for criminal justice reform is asking the Arkansas Supreme Court to improve the pre-trial detention and release process in the state, which it says unjustly penalizes individuals for being poor or mentally ill.

DecARcerate, which describes itself as "an informal statewide coalition seeking improvements to our criminal justice system," said in a letter to Chief Justice Howard Brill that district and circuit judges routinely set monetary bail bonds "without due consideration being given to an individual’s financial ability to pay." Keeping people in county jails who are not a flight risk only because they're unable to post bail is erodes the presumption of innocence and is "creating a debtor prison in Arkansas," the letter states.

DecARcerate is asking the court to take two specific actions:

1. To give an immediate reminder to district and circuit judges of the express provisions of the applicable rules, which mandate the consideration of alternative conditions of release, before opting to set a bail bond; and

2. To form a working group of all relevant stakeholders to develop long-term, comprehensive reforms within a stated time frame.

Though decARcerate focuses on the human cost of overly punitive pre-trial detention practices, there's also the fact that Arkansas's county jails are overcrowded and overextended.

Here's the group's letter to the Supreme Court.

Tags: , , , , ,

Favorite

Speaking of...

Comments

Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

More by Benjamin Hardy

Readers also liked…

  • State Police issues statement on Jason Rapert 'threats'

    The State Police have issued a minor clarification in what appears to be an effort to soothe an enraged Sen. Jason Rapert, exposed here as overly excited about both a Conway parking lot question from a constituent as well as some inflammatory Internet rhetoric that he's interpreted as a dire threat on his life. State cops took his reports seriously, they say. But in the end, they found nothing actionable.
    • Sep 15, 2015
  • Arkansas Times Recommends: A Literary Edition

    Arkansas Times Recommends is a series in which Times staff members (or whoever happens to be around at the time) highlight things we've been enjoying this week.
    • Jul 1, 2016
  • Transgender electrician may sue employer over her firing

    Federal Judge Susan Webber Wright has ruled that Patricia Dawson, a transgender woman, may pursue her lawsuit that she was wrongfully fired by her employer, H & H Electric, because of her sex.
    • Sep 16, 2015

Most Shared

  • Constituents go Cotton pickin' at Springdale town hall

    Sen. Tom Cotton, cordial to a fault, appeared before a capacity crowd at the 2,200 seat Pat Walker Performing Arts Center at Springdale High tonight to a mixed chorus of clapping and boos. Other than polite applause when he introduced his mom and dad and a still moment as he led the crowd in a recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance — his night didn't get much better from there.
  • Stand up for Little Rock

    If Little Rock deteriorates because of substandard schools, there will be blame aplenty to share. But some elected leaders deserve special mention.
  • Hating the media

    Presidents, with the exception of George Washington, never found much joy with the media, although Donald Trump is the first to use the scarily freighted words "enemies of the people."
  • What's new and coming soon to Argenta

    A riverfront hotel, new residential development, food, drink and more.
  • Downtown Little Rock and North Little Rock are back in business

    Main Street and beyond bustles.

Visit Arkansas

Little River County gears up for Sesquicentennial

Little River County gears up for Sesquicentennial

Historical entertainment planned for joint celebration of three Southwest Arkansas milestone anniversaries

Most Recent Comments

Blogroll

 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation