Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Bail in New Jersey

There seems to be little time to blog lately – so many great advances in pretrial justice across the country that it’s hard to keep up. Here is a video discussing New Jersey’s entry into the revolution. It’s not long, but it shows agreement between both prosecutors and defense attorneys on the need for improvement. In passing, they reference the need to change New Jersey’s constitutional provisions dealing with the right to bail so as to further best practices. This is not uncommon – many states are realizing that these constitutional provisions, which we often feel are unassailable, must be changed in order to fully effectuate a legal and evidence-based “bail” – “no bail” dichotomy that results in the appropriate placement of defendants pretrial. If it does it right, New Jersey will allow for the transparent detention of high risk defendants while allowing the release of lower risk ones, all without the need for money and its unhealthy tendency to sort things based on wealth.

Happy watching!