Cash Bail, Barbenheimer

Cash Bail, Barbenheimer

August 2023 Newsletter

Rana Law Group Newsletter

In this issue:

  • Cash Bail
  • Just for Fun: Barbenheimer

Cash Bail
In light of Illinois becoming the first state to abolish cash bail, I wanted to share some thoughts on the topic.  The elimination of cash bail is incredibly polarized.  Some want to see it abolished because it disproportionately keeps those of lesser means in jail before their case can be heard and allows those of means to be get out sooner, potentially to commit the exact same crime, tamper with witnesses or spoil evidence.  Others with a tough on crime stance want the practice to remain because they do not want violent criminals released while their case progresses through the criminal justice system.  As with many issues, both sides have good intentions.

It is important to remember our system of law and order is built on the presumption of innocence which means, just because someone is accused of a crime and detained, it does not automatically mean the person is guilty.  A judge or jury must hear facts and evidence to determine if the accusation is true.  The accused may have to wait weeks, months, or (especially during COVID) years until they get to trial.  This can be problematic because, during this time, the person can lose any number of things including their job, housing or custody of their children.  When the system of pre-trial detention is based on money collateral, this disproportionately impacts those of lesser means.  Some judges set standard cash bail amounts of $5,000 to $10,000 for many small, non-violent crimes.  Given approximately 37% of households do not have $400 to cover an emergency, the bail amounts can be too high for many.  It results in overcrowded jails full of individuals who cannot make bail, which ultimately is a burden on taxpayers who foot the bill for housing these individuals.

Now you might be thinking – sure, but not everyone is innocent.  What if the cops catch someone in the act of a violent crime?  Absolutely, dangerous criminals be detained until their trial.  But for those that are violent criminals AND have money, they can make bond and walk the streets, free to potentially commit other crimes while their case slowly works its way through the criminal justice system.

So what are the solutions?  A knee jerk reaction to make the system “fair” could be that all accused people stay in jail until they go to trial but that goes counter to the notion of innocent until proven guilty.  Judges ultimately have to make judgment calls (hence their name) so, rather than setting a cash bail amount, they could perhaps hear brief arguments from the prosecutor and the defendant’s council as to whether the accused should be released pre-trial or not (similar to a preliminary hearing).  If the person is a flight risk, a threat to the victim or there is overwhelming evidence of a serious crime, the judge can keep the person in jail.  This allows the process to remove money as an arbitrary factor of whether someone is set free or not, regardless of the actual facts of the case.  It will be interesting to keep an eye on whether other states make a similar move.

Just for Fun: Barbenheimer
This summer has been busy with closing out litigation files which were backlogged from the COVID closures.  Even with all the backlog of work, almost no one in the office could resist taking part in the blockbuster Barbenheimer movie weekend!  Both movies received rave reviews, with Barbie sitting at an 84% audience score and and Oppenheimer sitting at an even more impressive 91% audience score!

Barbie proved to be extremely popular in our office with Tarun, Brittany, Sarah and Christine seeing it opening weekend.  Sarah saw it a second time (and is considering a third) and Brittany plans to see it again as well.  No wonder it already made a billion worldwide!  Fun Fact:  Mattel is still taking preorders for Weird Barbie, but other movie characters like Cowboy Ken and President Barbie are already sold out!

Paul is the only one so far to make it to Oppenheimer.  Tarun and Brittany both want to see it as well but said they may wait for it to be released on streaming after finding out it is a three hour commitment!  Fun Fact:  Each IMAX film reel for Oppenheimer is 11 miles long and weighs 600 pounds!

Case Referrals  

From time to time, clients call and ask which type of cases we handle.  Our practice is built on referrals from satisfied clients.  We know that if we work hard and do a good job for our clients, they will tell their friends about us.  The best compliment from a former client is that client entrusting us with the potential case of their friend or family.  Our office specializes in the following cases:

  1. Personal Injury (auto collisions, trucking, motorcycle, slip and fall)
  2. Work Injuries
  3. Traffic tickets and DUI/DWI

If you know someone that meets these criteria, please have them call our office.  If someone does not quite fit the above criteria, please still have the prospective referral give us a call as we can usually help the person find the right attorney via a referral.

Share the Love – Reviews

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  3. For Avvo: click on “reviews” and then “Review Tarun Rana”

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