Many citizens have heard the national and statewide discussion about bail reform. It has been occurring in our county for several years placing the integrity of our criminal justice system and the citizens of this county at risk. Many of those who are arrested in our county are being released from jail without posting bail before they even make a court appearance. These include individuals who have a history of criminal conduct and a history of not appearing in court. They also include individuals who were arrested on a warrant where a judge has specifically issued the warrant as a “no bail” warrant. There is no justification for releasing an individual with a no bail warrant without a judge’s order.
These individuals who are released at the jail are given dates to appear in court. Under these circumstances it should be no surprise that a very large majority of these individuals never appear in court. When they do not, another warrant is issued, and they remain at large until they are rearrested, and the cycle starts over again.
The Placer County jail is no longer accepting individuals who have been arrested on these warrants unless they have a new criminal charge. Law enforcement officers are forced to release them with another court date which they again will never voluntarily attend. It sends the message that you will no longer go to jail or be arrested for your criminal conduct in order to be held accountable; essentially an invitation for these criminals to commit more crime.
This cycle needs to stop. Many of our leaders refuse to address this issue in our county. They seem more concerned with getting criminals out of jail than keeping the violent criminals in the jail. They allow the use of a so-called “risk assessment” tool created and provided by bail reform advocates and academics to justify these releases.
If elected Sheriff, I will fight these bail reform initiatives and their impacts. I will establish policies in the jail to assure the most dangerous individuals will not be released without bail or without appearing in a courtroom where a judge can determine if bail is appropriate. I will never allow an individual with a no bail warrant to be released without an order from a judge. I will advocate for the completion of the South County Jail which, if completed, will alleviate many of the issues that are impacting our county. If something is not done to stop these short sighted attempts at reform the number of crimes and the number of victims will only continue to rise.