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Policing Matters Podcast: Should the cash-bail system be discontinued?

Jim and Doug discuss the movement in recent years to discontinue the cash-bail system


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In 2013, researchers from the Arnold Foundation studied 153,000 bookings into Kentucky jails over a two year period and found that the longer low-risk defendants were held in jail the more likely they were to engage in criminal activity. Now, we have to separate correlation from causation — we cannot go leaping to the conclusion that if-this-then-that. However, there has been some criticism that the cash-bail system disproportionately affects lower-income individuals, and that it makes no sense to decide whether someone should be held in jail awaiting trial based solely on how much money they have. In this podcast segment, Jim and Doug discuss the movement in recent years to discontinue the cash-bail system at least for offenders who are evaluated to be low-risk of flight or reoffending. 

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