After a summer hiatus, The CAP⋅impact Podcast is back!
On this week’s episode, I talked with Colin Starger, a professor of Law at the University of Baltimore. Maryland recently enacted bail reform by changing its pretrial procedures to lessen the use of money bail as a means for someone accused of a crime to maintain their freedom pre-trial. The change made it so that money bail was to be the option of last resort when deciding is the accused should be held without bail, released without bail, or released on bail. At the topline level, the bail reform worked, and the use of money bail as a means to one’s freedom dropped. However, thanks to Professor Starger’s research, a report looking at Prince George County in Maryland found that the rate of accused persons being held without bail spiked. For those like Professor Starger who were hoping the reforms would help address prison overcrowding, the jump in people being held without bail felt like a game of Whack-A-Mole gone wrong. They got one mole square on the head only for a new one to pop up in its place.
California also recently made moves in the bail reform arena by eliminating cash bail. That change is on hold pending a referendum on the 2020 ballot. My conversation with Professor Starger is equal parts a look into California’s bail-less future and walking through how California can avoid the same pitfalls experienced in Maryland.
If you enjoyed today’s conversation on bail reform with Professor Starger, please share it with a friend or colleague. You can also help more people find the show by subscribing to The CAP⋅impact Podcast on Apple Podcasts – or wherever you listen to podcasts – and leave the show a 5-star review.