Sadie Rose-Stern
Director of Communications and External Affairs
Justice Policy Institute
[email protected]
(202) 888-6748

(ANNAPOLIS, MD, Jan. 10, 2018) –

Justice Policy Institute joins the Coalition for a Safe and Just Maryland in calling for a freeze on consideration of any legislation profiting the bail bond industry. Thanks to the FBI, we now know that the bail bond industry is willing to break the law and bribe legislators to support the industry.

The judiciary recently issued a Rule instructing judges on the proper use of money bail in the consideration of release and the legislature should support implementation of the new Rule, and enhance public safety by funding pretrial services.

Marc Schindler, JPI Executive Director, said “Any bill the bail industry supports this year is tainted by illegal bribes offered to at least two members that we currently know about. As a result of this corruption of the process, no bill supported by the bail industry should be considered this legislative session.”

We know money bail harms low income people and people of color, who can spend excessive amounts of time in jail awaiting trial simply because they can’t afford to pay for their freedom. JPI State Based Strategist Keith Wallington said, “people can, and have, lost their jobs in as little as 3 or 4 days.” Money bail also fails to enhance safety because a person’s ability to afford bail has nothing to do with how dangerous that person may or may not be.

Schindler said, “if the legislature takes any action at all, it should join the judiciary in the one thing that does protect public safety and fund pretrial services across the state.”

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The Justice Policy Institute, based in Washington, DC, is dedicated to reducing the use of incarceration and the justice system by promoting fair and effective policies.

, Criminal Justice