Miami Herald



Bail assures a defendant’s appearance in court. If the proposed bail reform is implemente­d, as mentioned in the Miami Herald’s Jan. 22 story “Remaking Bail,” this will have the opposite effect.

Pre-trial release programs (no cash bail) were meant for first-time, nonviolent indigent defendants. When programs such as the proposed are created, there is a tremendous increase in people failing to appear for their court dates. This increases danger to law enforcemen­t due to the thousands of additional warrants.

The lack of consequenc­es for failure to appear generally empowers people to re-offend, resulting in a higher crime rate. Jails become overcrowde­d when people with standard schedule bail bonds are forced to stay in jail unnecessar­ily until they see a judge.

This type of reform has been tried, and has failed, across the country. MiamiDade should reject it because it is bad criminalju­stice policy.

– Salvador Rivas, Florida chair, National Associatio­n of Bail Agents, adjunct professor, criminal justice and sociology, Florida Internatio­nal University, Miami and does not encourage students to think.

Do the governor and our state legislator­s not realize the university is a place for the free exchange of ideas? Do our politician­s want to put braces on the brains of our young people?

Florida must consider what a national laughingst­ock its higher-education system is becoming.

– Maureen S. Dinnen,

Fort Lauderdale

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