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Governor Proposes Changes to State's Bail System

Posted on in Criminal Defense

bail reform, Governor Malloy, Stamford Criminal Defense Attorney Suggested overhauls on the prison system are sweeping the nation, with some proposing reforms to sentencing and others suggesting changes in parole options. In Connecticut, Governor Dannel P. Malloy is taking a different approach by calling for a change to the state’s bail system for charged but not convicted prisoners.

Connecticut Already Ahead of the Curve

While many states have only just started to consider reform for nonviolent offenders, Governor Malloy has already passed a Second Chance initiative. Designed to reduce penalties for many drug offenders, the bill is aimed at successfully reintegrating nonviolent offenders back into society where they can potentially become productive workers. But the Governor is not satisfied just yet; to truly make an impact on the state’s economic state, he wants to change the bail system for prisoners awaiting sentencing.

Why Change the Bail System?

Reducing the cost of bail might seem counterproductive to some, but Governor Malloy is looking at the big picture. Most nonviolent offenders have fairly low bonds already, but many of them are unable to meet their bond because they lack a support system, are homeless or unemployed, or they suffer from a mental illness or drug addiction. An alarming percentage of them also happen to be veterans, and very few—if any—of them pose a real threat to society.

Changing the bail system would enable them to return to society as they await any further potential consequences, and they would have time to make corrections to their life that may even keep them out of jail. Examples could include going to rehab for drug addiction, finding a job to pay fines and court costs, or seeking out desperately-needed mental health services.

What the Reform Would Look Like

Currently, all bail is monetary—an amount of money that must be paid to be set free while awaiting trial. While this may work for some, for others, coming up with cash is impossible. Governor Malloy has proposed that this be altered so that it is based on risk—flight risk, danger to society, etc.—through a pretrial monitoring system. Such alterations could make it possible for impoverished, unemployed, addicted, or disabled citizens to leave jail before their trial instead of sitting in a cell where they are unable to turn the tables on their situation.

Facing Criminal Charges? Hire a Skilled Criminal Defense Attorney

Regardless of what your situation or your charges may be, your chances are better when you have a skilled Connecticut criminal defense attorney on your side. He can help protect your rights, help you understand the implications of your charges, and present you with whatever options you may have. With more than 40 years of experience, the Law Offices of Daniel P. Weiner can help. Schedule a consultation by calling 203-348-5846 today.