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Warnings Sound As Illinois Prepares to End Cash Bail, Empty Jails

Justin L. Fowler/The State Journal-Register via AP, Pool

In Illinois, state leaders are set to run full bore into woke so-called criminal justice "reform" as they work to implement the remaining portions of the Safety, Accountability, Fairness and Equity-Today — aka SAFE-T — Act that include abolishing cash bail in the Land of Lincoln. 


As the deadline for implementing such provisions draws near, public safety officials are ringing the alarm on the dangerous consequences of the law that was signed in 2021 by Governor JB Pritzker.

According to the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority, the SAFE-T Act "implements sweeping reform impacting many aspects of the criminal justice system, including pre-arrest diversion, policing, pretrial, sentencing, and corrections." And while most of the Act's provisions went into effect last summer, a few remaining pieces — including ending cash bail — will take effect on January 1, 2023.

The law would "restrict which crimes a person can be arrested for, and would free those in custody for 12 offenses, including second-degree murder, aggravated battery, and arson without bail, as well as drug-induced homicide, kidnapping, burglary, robbery, intimidation, aggravated DUI, aggravated fleeing and eluding, drug offenses and threatening a public official." So, it's a free for all in which people arrested for most crimes are released immediately, or after a few days at the latest. 

Gov. Pritzker has heralded the legislation as proof his government is "leading the way in addressing the war on drugs as no state has before."

But, according to many on the frontlines of sustain law and order and hold criminals to account for their crimes, Illinois' never-before-seen law is not one worth celebrating. 


An op-ed by Republican state Rep. Jim Durkin in The Chicago Tribune explained how, under the SAFE-T Act, "it’s possible drug kingpins, smugglers, traffickers or distributors of illegal drugs won’t be detained before trial, no matter the quantity of deadly substances they are accused of possessing." 

That is, the "reform" set to take effect in Illinois is not just about small-time offenders who are too poor to afford bail — those Gov. Pritzker and Illinois Democrats said their law would help. Nope, because equity, or whatever, the new law will benefit massively profitable and increasingly dangerous drug cartels and gangs.

As local ABC affiliate WTVO reported, the end of cash bail "means suspects charged with certain felonies — including second-degree murder, aggravated battery, and arson — will be released without bail." Just... back out onto the street. In Illinois' Winnebago County, State’s Attorney J. Hanley warned residents that meant roughly "400 criminal defendants will be released back into your community." What could go wrong?

Peter Sopczak, the Johnson County Sheriff, reiterated what's going to happen in Illinois at the start of the new year saying, “anyone sitting in jail right now with all these pending charges, they’re going to be let out — the gates are open and they’re going to be let out onto the streets."


What's more, ending cash bail means that justice for victims of crime will be delayed, and witnesses will be endangered and likely dissuaded from speaking up in an investigation while the case's defendant roams free. It also further endangers the safety of law enforcement officers who must now track down violent defendants to haul them back to court, which also takes manpower away from preventing crimes by tying up officers who are forced to re-detain those who already allegedly committed crimes.

Illinois, thanks to its Democrat leaders, will become the first state in America to end cash bail, meaning the eyes of other blue states are undoubtedly watching to see if they can attempt similar "reforms." That also means there's going to be a Biden border crisis-level cover-up of the negative results of the policy with heavy assists from the mainstream media, Democrat lawmakers, and biased fact-checkers.

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