A criminal defendant’s right to be freed from jail on bond while awaiting trial is guaranteed in the U.S. Constitution’s Bill of Rights and bail reform as part of a more considerable justice reform effort. This is a big issue being discussed on a national and state level.
San Antonio Bondsman John McRae has spent his career helping people who’ve been arrested get out of jail on bond so they can await their trial at home. The 8th Amendment says a judge can’t impose “excessive bail,” but what is excessive to you has much to do with your financial situation. At McRae Bail Bonds, we have a long history of helping families find affordable ways to pay their bail and get their arrested loved one out of jail quickly.
There is a national effort to address justice reform and change bail laws, but it is raising concerns that dangerous inmates are being let out of jail where they can commit other crimes. In the following audio recording of Nancy Grace’s show on Sirius Radio, she looks at the controversy with Beth Chapman of the bounty-hunting Chapman family on the “Dog the Bounty Hunter” show and the president of the National Bail Bonds Association.
To address justice reform issues, many cities, counties and states are looking at options to release defendants without paying bail if they are likely to attend court. Last year, The Texas Legislature tried unsuccessfully to pass a bill to rely more on these risk assessments than fixed bail schedules. Dallas and Harris Counties are currently in lawsuits brought by indigent misdemeanor and felony defendants.
The organization, Texas Alliance for Safe Communities, has been tracking legislation nationwide and monitoring implementation and results.