Sun 27 Jul 2008
I recently read a blog article discussing the Constitutionality of the Connecticut Bail Bond system. Some of us who have been arrested or know others who have, recognize the disproportional impacts of the bail system, especially around race and class. This article (as well as one in 2007) was written by Christine Stuart [CT News Junkie titled Challenging Connecticut’s Bail Bond system. Is it Constitutional?]. In this article Christine discusses the ongoing lawsuit by Hartford Attorney A. Paul Spinella claiming that Connecticut’s bail system is unconstitutional because it treats minorities differently than non-minorities and deprives indigent individuals of their rights. In a key section she notes:
Spinella said he’s found 55 instances where state courts have set bail amounts for minorities that were higher than those set for whites charged in similar crimes. And 140 instances where indigent people charged with substantial crimes were forced to spend months in jail because they were unable to post bond.
It was also quite interesting to read that the Connecticut legislature has wrestled with changes to the bail bond system for almost 20 years, yet few (more…)