09/23/2011 (press release: cjrcva) // Yorktown, Virginia, USA // Criminal Justice Reform Coalition Media Relations
A new bail schedule, which is a tool used in setting bail for criminal defendants upon arrest, takes effect this month for the City of Las Vegas. Approved for September 1, 2011 by the Las Vegas Township Justice Court, the new bail schedule seeks to streamline the process of setting bail for criminal defendants. The former schedule used in Las Vegas was cumbersome and several pages long, and set bail pursuant to individual offenses charged. The new bail schedule sets bail in accordance with the level of crime, making the bail setting process easier and more transparent.
While Las Vegas’ efforts to streamline their bail schedule is important, we must recognize that the right to bail which is not excessive exists in our National and most State Constitutions, and this is a right we must protect. We must insure that we have effective and efficiently run pretrial release programs in Las Vegas and jurisdictions across the Country which assist those criminal defendants who cannot possibly afford a bail bond fee. We strongly support legislative and regulatory efforts to require such programs to assist poor and indigent criminal defendants so that we can work to reduce pretrial jail populations, both in Nevada and across the Country. We also hope that more jurisdictions across the United States will follow the lead of the Las Vegas Township Justice Court and work to streamline their bail schedules and their bail setting process. Bail schedules, which are properly vetted and regularly updated, serve to make the process of setting bail more fair and consistent, and the CJRC strongly supports the use of such tools.
The Criminal Justice Reform Coalition is an education and outreach organization focused on advancing the cause of judicial reform at the state and federal levels, in an effort to reduce jail populations and reform the sentencing process to reduce recidivism and rehabilitate offenders. You can obtain more information about the CJRC by visiting our web site at www.criminaljusticereformcoalition.com.