Getting Released From Jail Without Posting Bond May Soon Be a Reality

There are 9 counties in Indiana that will begin using special tools that will help them determine if someone can be released from jail without bail and not pose a threat to society. These reforms are expected to go into effect in all courts on Jan. 1, 2018. It wouldn’t be surprising to see these reforms make their way into the St. Louis area either. When, and if they do, if you are a bail bondsman in St. Louis, Mo this will most likely affect your business.
There are stories being reported about a stroke victim that died in jail, and he was only there for smoking pot. There is another circumstance where a Virginia man who was charged with a misdemeanor for smoking marijuana in his own home died in jail in after he could not afford $100 for bail.
An article in the about bail reform says “Bail reform is about victims’ rights too, Pennsylvania officials say: Prominent Pennsylvania legal minds are calling on the state to reform broken bail systems that jail low-level, poor defendants while wealthier people convicted of more serious crimes pay their way out.
“It’s time to . . . stop locking up low-risk individuals who will be worse because they were locked up for being poor, not for being a risk to public safety,” Secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections John E. Wetzel and Pennsylvania Victim Advocate Jennifer R. Storm wrote in a column for, in which they encouraged a panel that is examining the bail system to move forward with reforms.”
To read the full article go here
It is important to recognize that the bail reform proposed above seems to be only relevant to circumstances where the accused would not be a risk to public safety. It would not apply to circumstances in which the accused is charged with a violent crime or could be considered a danger to the community, like in sex trafficking crimes.
Over the past 10 years, law enforcement agencies from throughout the country have been faced with an upward trend of sex trafficking crimes at an alarming rate. It is common for these crimes to take place in hotel rooms, and often times the perpetrator will share the victim’s photos online. Washington University, located in St. Louis, MO has assembled a group of researchers that are using cutting edge technology and science to help prevent these crimes. They are using a high-tech approach to help combat the sex trafficking trade.


A recent article at states “researchers from Washington University in St. Louis are using science to fight back, developing a high-tech approach to combat the sex trafficking trade. Teaming up with a nonprofit organization called the Exchange Initiative, Robert Pless, professor of computer science and engineering at the School of Engineering & Applied Science, and research associate/doctoral candidate Abby Stylianou have designed a new, web-based application that helps fight sex trafficking by targeting the places where the crimes usually occur.”


Robert Pless, professor of computer science and engineering at the school said “my lab works to create new ways of understanding and using images collected by webcams and smartphones.” Pless also said “In this project, we are working to build new technologies tools to fight sex trafficking — first, by making tools so everyone can contribute data to fight these horrible crimes; and second, by creating new image-analysis tools so law enforcement can best use these images in investigations.”


The app was described in the article as working as follows. “The app, called TraffickCam, allows travelers to upload images of their hotel rooms to a database. Law enforcement officers can search the database to pinpoint where a particular photo was taken, in order to track down where a victim has been. Developed by Pless and Stylianou to maximize the accuracy and usefulness of the imagery, TraffickCam is a user-friendly, high-tech approach that allows citizens to fight one of the fastest-growing and most heinous crimes in our country today.


TraffickCam is simple to download and use, and is available on both iPhones and Androids. Once installed, it allows travelers to easily take photos of their hotel rooms, provide an exact location, then upload the photos to the database, which is only accessible by law enforcement officers.”


While bail reform might be a good idea for petty crimes or possibly even in circumstances where the offender is not a danger to society, it is probably not a good idea to take the reform to far. People who commit serious crimes must be held accountable for their actions and justice must be served. The only way justice can be served is if the accused goes through due process in a court of law. Posting bail increases the chances that an individual will appear in court and justice will be served.


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Source: @Stl_Bail_Bonds September 14, 2016 at 09:20AM
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