Philadelphia DA drops cash bail for 'low-level' crimes

Written by The Associated Press | Feb 21, 2018 4:17 PM

Larry Krasner

(Philadelphia) -- Philadelphia's top prosecutor says his office will stop asking for cash bail for a number of misdemeanor and non-violent felony crimes.

District Attorney Larry Krasner says that requiring people to post bail for minor crimes unfairly targets defendants who cannot afford to pay to keep themselves out of jail.

Krasner's announcement Wednesday aligns with ongoing reforms in the city that seek to drive down the municipal jail population by diverting some defendants toward treatment programs and issuing tickets instead of arresting people for certain low-level offenses.

The move away from cash bail has gained national traction with the support of ranking judges and politicians. New Jersey last year all but eliminated cash bail and has since reported a 20 percent decrease in the number of jailed people awaiting trial.

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