By now you’ve probably heard about the smash and grab robberies that have been happening in various cities and states. Recently, Los Angeles police arrested 14 people suspected of participating in these crimes around the city. However, with zero bail policies still in place, the suspects were quickly released after booking and processing.
LAPD Chief Michel Moore criticized the ongoing Zero Bail policy that’s in place. It was originally designed to keep jail populations at a minimum during the pandemic in an effort to control the spread of COVID-19. However, since it has been in place, crime has gone up. Moore notes that auto thefts have gone up over the past two years, and Mayor Garcetti said violent crime is up 3.5% this year.
They’re calling for the justice system to start scaling back the zero bail policy to once again start deterring would-be criminals with the potential for incarceration.
District Attorney Gascon, whose policies have been criticized significantly, isn’t to blame for the zero bail policy since it was put into place before he took office. Instead, the Mayor and Police Chief are pointing the finger at judges, saying that they need to stop releasing repeat offenders.
The zero bail policy made sense during the pandemic as extraordinary times often call for extraordinary measures. However, there have been significant problems with it. Offenders are frequently arrested, cited, released, and then rearrested later (sometimes the very same day) suspected of committing another crime. The zero bail policy paints a picture of what the State of California may look like should bail reform be enacted by the state government.
Referendums on bail reform have been put in place, and voters rejected it. However, the state government continues to attempt to eliminate bail – preferring to release suspected criminals from custody. These suspects frequently go on to commit additional crimes.