Back in August 2017, former California Governor Jerry Brown signed Senate Bill 10 and turned it into a law. The landmark law, which was created to abolish the money bail system in the state, was scheduled to go into effect in fall 2019. Ever since then, human rights groups and many others have argued against the law and helped to put it on the back burner… for now. California voters are will be in charge of deciding the law’s fate in November 2020, and multitudes of people and groups are hoping that it gets voted down.
When it was initially proposed, those who supported Senate Bill 10 said that it would help overhaul the bail system and stop many people from getting locked up for long periods of time or getting pressured into accepting plea deals due to financial troubles. However, those who have pushed back against it have said that they believe the bill could do way more harm than good if it becomes a law. Here are some reasons why they’re so skeptical of it.
It could give too much power to judges.
In the past, judges already wielded a lot of power when deciding whether or not to allow those convicted of crimes to leave jail before facing a trial. They could choose whether or not to set bail for them and control their fate in a lot of ways. Under Senate Bill 10, they could conceivably have even more power. They would be responsible for using a computer program to determine whether or not someone accused of a crime should be considered a flight risk. This could lead to a person being unfairly detained by a judge simply because of what they believe after using a computer program.
It could lead to a person’s detention for almost any crime.
Outside of putting a lot of power into the hands of judges, critics of Senate Bill 10 have also ripped it for being entirely too broad when it comes to identifying which crimes people should be detained for ahead of a trial. They’ve called the bill out for failing to differentiate much between violent crimes and low-level misdemeanors. They worry that it could lead to prosecutors pushing for the detention of those who don’t necessarily need to be detained. They also worry that it could lead to some people who have been accused of violent crimes being set free.
It could decimate the bail bond industry.
There are more than 3,000 bail agents in California at this time. Senate Bill 10 would essentially make it impossible for them to do business moving forward. It would wipe out part of a large industry and hurt the state’s economy. What’s more, it could also set a precedent for the same thing to happen in other states.
The state will have to wait until later this year to see where Senate Bill 10 stands. For now, California’s current bail system will remain in place. If you would like to take advantage of it, Bail Man Bail Bonds
can help you by providing you with fast instant bail approval. Call us at 866-945-2245 if you need to arrange for bail to be paid for a loved one.