MassBailFund Profile picture
Jan 12, 2018 10 tweets 3 min read Twitter logo Read on Twitter
These types of announcements are happening with more frequency as bail has become emblematic of the deep and entrenched injustices in our criminal legal system. While they are lauded as “huge reforms”, these commitments are anything but - 1/9
It’s actually NOT OK to use bail for any reason other than to ensure someone comes to court in MA. Bail statute says that and the SJC (our highest court) says that. ADA Ryan however, says she’s going to continue to request that people are held on bail to keep us all safe. 2/9
If we were concerned about safety, we would be having a much harder conversation @ poverty, housing , substance abuse tx and mental health tx. Instead, DAs and “reformers” tell us that locking people up, before they are convicted of any crime, keeps us safer. 3/9
Safety concerns are a smokescreen to prevent us from looking at what unaffordable bail actually doe. BAIL FORCES PEOPLE TO PLEAD GUILTY. In our experience, 50% of our cases have been or will be dismissed . People who are free, have better case outcomes. 4/9
Where 99% of all cases end in a plea, this tells us that asking for bail is a DAs way of ensuring a “win”. It’s a short cut to convicting and jailing an overwhelming number of people, the majority of whom are POC. 4/9
DAs commit to not asking for bail on “nonviolent” offenses because they know 2 things; 1 - they won't be held accountable to what that means b/c they don’t release data on prosecutions and 2 - the definition of “nonviolent” is a murky hole they can make up as they go along. 5/9
Asking for bail on “violent” charges still means that PEOPLE WITH MONEY GO HOME AND PEOPLE WITHOUT MONEY DON’T. 6/9
It's worth noting that since September 2017, we've spent $8500 freeing people from ADA Ryans jails - that's 22 people (that we know about) her office requested to be held on bails they couldn't afford. 13 out of the 22 were for property crimes, INCLUDING A $25 BAIL. 7/9
For years we’ve watched DAs hold hundreds of people on bails regardless of the allegations or the situation of the person accused or the desires of the people harmed. The culture of impunity that DAs operate within won’t change because bail has become an election issue. 8/9
We shouldn’t accept lip service as though it’s real change. We should demand better for our communities. In the meantime, we will have our eyes on these DAs and the ADAs prosecuting cases. They do, after all, work for us. #FreeThemAll #EndMoneyBail 9/9

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