ABSTRACT

U.S. Constitutional Limits on State Money-bail Practices for Criminal Defendants [February 26, 2019]   [open pdf - 998KB]

From the Document, "Money-bail systems allow criminal defendants to avoid prison while awaiting trial by posting a bond set by a fee schedule. The impact of money-bail systems on indigent criminal defendants, however, has prompted legislative interest in and legal challenges to such systems, particularly when the bail does not reflect an individual's specific circumstances, such as potential flight risk or public safety. Critics of money-bail systems assert that fee schedules unduly burden indigent defendants, while supporters argue that fee schedules provide uniformity and ensure that defendants appear at trial. Several states and municipalities have reformed their bail systems. Voters in New Mexico approved a constitutional amendment that allows judges to deny bail to defendants considered exceptionally dangerous, but otherwise permits pretrial release of nondangerous indigent offenders who cannot make bail. Other jurisdictions have altered or eliminated their moneybail systems in recent years, including cities in Alabama, Georgia, and Maryland."

Report Number:
CRS Report for Congress, R45533
Author:
Publisher:
Date:
2019-02-26
Copyright:
Public Domain
Retrieved From:
Congressional Research Service: https://crsreports.congress.gov/
Format:
pdf
Media Type:
application/pdf
URL:
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