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Taxpayer Funded Pretrial Release: A Failed System

NCJ Number
Date Published
15 pages
This document presents the critical differences between government and private sector bail bonding.
This paper examines the major differences between the use of Pretrial Services, local taxpayer funded agencies that handle unsecured releases, and commercial bail bonding services. The authors present information to support their position that taxpayer funded bail boning operations are inefficient and a waste of local government resources. The authors examined numerous studies from the U.S. Department of Justice, the American Legislative Exchange Council, and the Journal of Law and Economics, among others, and found that the studies indicate that failures to appear on unsecured releases were twice as high as those released on a surety bond. The studies also indicate that offenders with unsecured releases were more likely to commit crimes while released than those offenders released on a surety bond. Finally, the authors contend that studies show that high number of offenders on unsecured pretrial release lead to increased costs to local governments. Exhibits and references


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