14 recommendations look to reform pre-trial services programs

The Los Angeles County Supervisory Board voted this week to advance recommendations from plans to reform the county’s bail and pretrial system.

Their motion, in response to a March decision by the California Supreme Court on “Inre Kenneth Humphrey,” states that the state bail system significantly increases poverty and relative wealth as a way to decide who should be released. Called unconstitutional because it should be reduced. Who should be imprisoned before the trial?

Various branches of the county judicial system, including the Public Defender Office and the LA District Attorney’s Office, have been appointed by the Supervisory Board to draft a report that matches the county with the decisions of the State Supreme Court.

The ruling will also require that those being tried be detained in lieu of bail, unless pretrial services or alternatives to imprisonment are available.

Earlier this month, a top representative of the county’s lawyers made 14 recommendations on a bail system that included everything from creating a new pretrial services department to searching for and creating the funds and resources already available to implement the new services department. I presented the matter. A method by which data on the success and / or failure of such programs can be generated and analyzed.

Pre-trial service department

The first recommendation of the report, as mentioned in the second recommendation of the report, focuses primarily on pre-trial services, connecting defendants to currently available services and providing community-based organizations or CBOs. We are looking for a department in the county to identify. For the specified pre-trial service.

“The responsibilities of this unit or department include contracting with community-based organizations to provide services, monitoring the quality of those services, and managing the budget for such services,” read the report. I will. The report later added, “By addressing needs, we will ensure (defendant’s) appearance and promote public safety for future proceedings.”

These services placed in the database include case text message reminders, child / elderly care, food, shelter, mental health / drug / alcohol services, etc., according to one recommendation.

Another unit recommended for creation was the pretrial release unit, which connects the accused more quickly with their representatives prior to their placement.

“A serious problem with current detention practices is that poor arrests are never assigned to defenders at the time of arrest,” the report said. “Instead, they often only have to wait a few days in prison before arriving in court, giving them access to a lawyer, who can begin the painstaking process of creating a release plan for that person. I can do it.”

This unit instead uses the service to connect the individual with the defendant in a pre-arrangement process — the moment the defendant enters a guilty or innocent plea before the trial process begins.

Bail reform

The report states that under the old bail system, poverty is a substitute for safety and flight risk. This is the original reason for having a bail system that encourages people to return to court and collect the money repaid by the judicial system.

Most of the recommendations include changes to bail schedules and bail-related court procedures, adjusting bail schedules to better match national averages and make them more affordable for those accused of crimes. It states that it is necessary. The report states that the median bail in California is five times the national average.

Explaining the need to avoid “unnecessary imprisonment” for minor or technical violations, the recommendations take into account socio-economic data on the affordability of bail for detained individuals. Seeking a “traditional” bail schedule.

Only in extreme circumstances where no alternative can be found can one set a bail that cannot be afforded. Recommendations include GPS / electronic surveillance, drug testing, face-to-face check-in, and the formation of working groups to develop recommendations for administrative and disciplinary response to status breaches.

It also consists of the aforementioned working groups (composed of district attorneys, public defenders, alternative public defenders, LA Superior Courts and related community-based organizations) to determine the appropriate way to determine the accused’s abilities. We are seeking evaluation and decision from. pay.

“Ability to pay means the ability to pay now without borrowing money, selling property, making money, receiving money from family members, or securing bonds,” the report defines. doing.

Data collection and cost analysis

The report also recommends that data collection be extensively collected from the pretrial department and the CBO, as data collection is a “key element” of the successful implementation of these programs.

The data collected show the results of pretrial pilots, also known as preparation, and, among other important datasets, the number of pretrial detentions, motions, hearings, complaints, and appearance failures. Track.

For cost-benefit analysis of each project, individual agencies carry out cost-benefit analysis for implementing the recommendations in the report.

The Supervisory Board agreed to approve the recommendations in the report earlier this week and voted, expecting a response from the Working Group within the next few months.

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