Resources

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The resources provided by the American Bail Coalition in this library are designed as a starting point for any potential research or reference into the law, bail bond studies.

Resource Articles & Bail Bond Studies

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Bail is rarely taught as a continuing legal education matter to address the often misunderstandings that surround it. In an effort to consolidate the law relating to bail, bail bonding, bail recover and regulation of the commercial surety bail industry, the American Bail Coalition is providing this library of resources and bail bond studies derived from the existing information provided by each state relating to these practices.

The resources and bail bond studies provided by the American Bail Coalition in this library are designed as a starting point for any potential research or reference into the “law.” Although updated periodically as it becomes relevant, any citation taken from this directory and bail bond studies  should be confirmed by cross referencing the statute, rule, regulation or order that is cited.

State by State Bail Resources

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Bail is perhaps the most misunderstood of all criminal justice applications. The concept is often addressed to law students as a foot note in a single day of criminal procedure teachings during the student’s three year law school career. Judges are often not educated on the subtleties of bail, bail bonding and commercial surety bail upon their ascending the bench.

Articles

Evidence-Based Sentencing And The Scientific Rationalization Of Discrimination

This paper critiques, on legal and empirical grounds, the growing trend of basing criminal sentences on actuarial recidivism risk prediction instruments that include demographic and socioeconomic variables. I argue that this practice violates the Equal Protection Clause and is bad policy: an explicit embrace of otherwise-condemned discrimination, sanitized by scientific language. To demonstrate that this practice should be subject to heightened constitutional scrutiny, I comprehensively review the relevant case law, much of which has been ignored by existing literature. To demonstrate that it cannot survive that scrutiny and is undesirable policy, I review the empirical evidence underlying the instruments. I show that they provide wildly imprecise individual risk predictions, that there is no compelling evidence that they outperform judges’ informal predictions, that less discriminatory alternatives would likely perform as well, and that the instruments do not even address the right question: the effect of a given sentencing decision on recidivism risk. Finally, I also present new, suggestive empirical evidence, based on a randomized experiment using fictional cases, that these instruments should not be expected merely to substitute actuarial predictions for less scientific risk assessments, but instead to increase the weight given to recidivism risk versus other sentencing considerations. This is one of many bail bond studies.

Read more: Evidence-Based Sentencing And The Scientific Rationalization Of Discrimination

Extraordinary Conditions of Release Under the Bail Reform Act

JONATHAN ZWEIG

Bernard Madoff and Marc Dreier, two prominent white-collar criminal defendants, were recently released on bail pending trial in the Southern District of New York. Each remained free on bail for several months before eventually being sent to prison. In both cases, the court set bail amounts in the millions of dollars and imposed numerous additional conditions of release, including home detention enforced by security guards, twenty-four-hour video monitoring, screening of visitors, limitations on communications, and the requirement that the defendants or their families bear the considerable expense of these conditions. The court imposed these terms of release pursuant to the Bail Reform Act of 1984, which mandates that courts release defendants before trial subject to “the least restrictive” set of conditions that “will reasonably assure the appearance of the person as required and the safety of any other person and the community.” Under the Bail Reform Act, a court will only detain a defendant if no set of available conditions will reasonably preserve the safety of the community and prevent the defendant from fleeing.

Read more: Extraordinary Conditions of Release Under the Bail Reform Act