The spreading use of algorithms to determine whether to detain individuals before trial has increasingly come under fire from civil rights advocates. A paper commissioned by the Safety and Justice Challenge offers an alternative vision designed to measure individuals’ chances of success in staying out of trouble rather than their risk of failure.
A study by researchers at John Jay College of Criminal Justice found that neighborhoods in areas close to dispensaries selling recreational marijuana experienced significantly higher levels of property crime.
Nearly three years after they were enacted, reforms in New Jersey’s cash bail system have caused major shifts in the justice system. Among the surprises: fewer people being arrested for low-level crimes and jail populations that plummeted even more than expected.
The bail bond industry is under attack from all sides of the political spectrum. A lawsuit filed in St. Louis by the conservative Texas Public Policy Foundation says the industry violates constitutional protections.
A CNN review of all 50 states and the District of Columbia found that the powerful bail bond industry has derailed, stalled or killed reform efforts in at least nine states, which combined cover more than one-third of the country’s population.
The tool gives the public a quick way to see who’s been arrested on gun-related charges and whether they have posted bail. It is part of a public relations offensive to draw attention to what some see as a cause of gun violence in Chicago.
For the last 18 months, Middlesex, which is Massachusetts’ most populous county, has sought to abolish the use of cash bail for low-level defendants, who otherwise languish in detention before trial if they cannot pay their way out of lockup.
Under a proposal by the Vera Institute of Justice, the city will be the first in the country to replace money bail and conviction fees— “the twin pillars on which money injustice stands”— with a fair system aimed at reducing the number of individuals held in pretrial detention.
The ruling comes in response to a suit filed by inmates who claim St. Louis is violating their constitutional rights by failing to weigh their ability to pay bonds, among other things, before jailing them.