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Debating reforms to California's high-priced bail rules

Handcuffs are seen on the hands of a twenty-year old
Handcuffs are seen on the hands of a twenty-year old "Street Villains" gang member who was arrested by Los Angeles Police Department officers.
Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

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A California Senate committee is considering major reforms to the state's criminal bail system which critics say unfairly punishes people with limited finances, plus costs taxpayers for jail time.

Senator Bob Hertzberg (D-Van Nuys), co-author of SB 10, argues detaining people simply due to an inability to afford money bail violates the American principles of equal protection and fundamental fairness. On the other side, Topo Padilla of the California Bail Agents Association concedes bail in California is excessive compared to the rest of the country, but he warns cheap bail conditions will encourage flight risks therefore harming the justice system.

If you have any first-hand experiences with California's bail or jail system, how has that informed your opinions?


Bob Hertzberg, California Senator (Democrat - Van Nuys), Co-Author of SB-10 - the California Money Bail Reform Act of 2017

Topo Padilla, Member of the California Bail Agents Association; Padilla has been a bail bondsman for 34 years