Let’s recap some basics of our criminal justice system. 1 – Police arrest people who they believe have committed a crime. 2 – Those arrested are believed to be innocent until proven guilty by a court of law. 3 – After being arrested, you may post bail depending on the type of offense and/or flight risk of the individual. 4 – If the individual cannot post bail, they will then remain in custody until the results of their trial.
Obviously, this is an oversimplification, but you get it. You get arrested…You go to jail…You post bail…You get released until trial…You don’t post bail, you stay in jail until trial. Simple. Straightforward. Right?
In places like New York City, they’ve instituted bail reform. Basically, they’ve eliminated the need to post a cash bail. The idea is that some people can’t afford bail and remain in jail due to their lack of funding. However, in practice, this has caused an increase in crimes where criminals are back on the streets within hours of being arrested.
That doesn’t happen here, right?
We do not have “bail reform” in Miami-Dade County, right?
Well, our partners at Miami’s Community Newspapers have been tracking the efforts of one Nushin G. Sayfie. Sayfie is the Chief Judge of the 11th Judicial Circuit of Florida. According to Grant Miller (Publisher of Miami’s Community Newspapers) Judge Sayfie is “leading the charge on a proposed reform plan that would modify Miami-Dade County’s Pretrial Release Program to the extent that violent criminals might be released without posting a bond and before appearing in front of a judge.”
Miller goes on to state “if the proposed reforms went into effect, a defendant charged with non-domestic assault and battery would be eligible for delegated release, without posting a bond and before appearing in front of a Judge.”
In other words, this means people that were just arrested for a criminal offense, including some violent criminal offenses, could be released without bail. So instead of a short term vacation inside of TGK, we’re talking about a potential immediate release.
Wake up call Miami Springs / VG Community.
If you think it’s bad when we get criminals who post bail and end up walking down NW 36th Street, imagine what it’ll be like when nearly everyone arrested gets released without bail.
Can you say “No. Thank you!”
Folks, the Turner Guilford Knight (TGK) Correctional Center located at NW 36th Street and NW 72nd Avenue is the primary jail that houses people who have been arrested by Police and have yet to post bail before a trial. You’ll notice cops from across Miami-Dade County dropping off arrestees at this facility. If bail reform becomes reality, we will get New York City type crime in our front yard.
Douglas Hanks of The Miami Herald reported last week in a story titled “DeSantis came to Miami to fight bail reform. Hours later, judge agrees to back off.” As the headline indicates, Governor Ron DeSantis “vowed to block ‘rogue’ judges pursuing bail reform.”
Bottom line is this. Miami Springs and Virginia Gardens need to pay close attention to so called bail reform.
For those business owners fighting Miami Springs and Virginia Gardens annexation, the safety of your employees and customers is also at risk should bail reform move forward.
To be clear, we’re not saying that all bail reform is bad. But any bail reform involving the release of those accused of violent offenses, home burglaries, and grand theft without bail should be fought vigorously.
WANTED FOR CARJACKING
In case you might think there’s no risk to Miami Springs or VG from TGK, i’ll remind you of the time a subject was wanted for a carjacking in VG right after being released from TGK.
What do you think? Do you like Miami’s current bail system? Do you prefer New York Style bail reform? Do you think those arrested for violent offenses should be allowed to be released without bail?
Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below or via social media.
This is a very serious matter that will impact the Springs/VG communities. Our Council should address this with a signed petition from the citizens voicing our concerns for the safety and security of our homes and businesses not to mention property value decrease. Time to take arms and stop the lawlessness in our society.