The bill "sets up a system that allows judges almost unlimited discretion to order people accused of crimes, but not convicted and presumptively innocent, to be held in jail with no recourse until their case is resolved", the letter stated.
California governor Jerry Brown signed a bill on Tuesday eliminating bail before trial. The organization is involved with bail overhaul efforts in more than 30 other states. Instead, counties will follow a pretrial risk assessment of a person before releasing them.
Brown described the new law, which takes effect on October 1, 2019 as establishing a pre-trial system that allows judges to determine a defendant's custody status based on a non-monetary assessment of public safety risk and the probability of the defendant missing a court date.
Nonviolent misdemeanor suspects will be released within 12 hours after being booked, with exceptions being made for people with recent violent felony convictions, failures to appear, or domestic violence allegations. SB 10 also introduces a process for the prosecution to file for "preventive detention", blocking the defendant's release pending a trial, if they believe there are no conditions that would ensure public safety or their appearance in court.
"SB 10 puts all Californians on equal footing before the law and makes public safety the only consideration in pretrial detention".
Jerry Brown on Monday signed into law a bill that is meant to combat what are believed underinsurance issues revealed by 2017 wildfires.
SB 10 authors Hertzberg and Assemblyman Rob Bonta, D-Alameda, negotiated for nearly a year with the reform groups and lobbyists for the bail industry, alongside Cantil-Sakauye and judges on her Pretrial Detention Reform Work Group.
"More people are going to buy guns, there will be more gun violence, you are going to have more crime", she said. Some worry risky people will go free and won't return for trial. That's exactly what has happened with the hot-button topic of bail reform, as the full Assembly narrowly passed Senate Bill 10 last week.
Federal courts in the United States rarely require defendants to post cash bail. But if crime rates escalate, for whatever reason, no one should underestimate the political temptation that will gain renewed strength to maximize incarceration again, no matter how unequal, unjust, or remote from the actual causes and consequences of lawbreaking.
In California, overarching rules will be set by the judicial council, the policy-making body for California's courts headed by the state's chief justice.