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Bad Bail System Makes for Pre-Trial Limbo

May 27th, 2013 | Category: Pretrial detention

People ask us why are people held in pretrial limbo in jails? One reason is the failed and corrupt process of bail. Here is a first hand account from fact sheet from the Justice Policy Institute.

” … Now I’ve got to sit in jail and wait for you all to come up with a deal so I can take the deal. It’s all psychological warfare. You know I’m going to have to take the plea because I can’t get out because I can’t pay [the bail].

And if I can’t pay for bail, you know I can’t pay for a lawyer; I’ve got to take a public defender. And then we negotiate. First, I get a hardball offer of prison time; you know I’m not gonna take that.

You know I can’t afford my bail, so you know I can sit for a couple months. Six months later or however long it takes, you decide to give me a nicer offer of two years, time served and then a year of probation. And now I’ve got a conviction.” –Travon Alston, Baltimore resident on the failed bailed

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