Monday, December 11, 2023

Top Dem. Prosecutor Says Illinois’s ‘Criminal Justice Reform’ Will Destroy System

'I never, in my 40-years in this profession, ever thought I'd ever see anything close to this...'

(Headline USA) A top Democratic prosecutor in Illinois sounded the alarm about a leftist criminal-justice law that would eliminate cash bail, calling it an egregious policy that would “destroy the criminal justice system in Illinois.”

Democrat Gov. J.B. Pritzker signed the so-called Safety, Accountability, Fairness and Equity-Today (SAFE-T) Act in 2021, but it does not go into effect until January 2023.

When it does, it will prevent law enforcement officials from detaining suspects involved in second-degree murder, aggravated assault, drug offenses, intimidation, carjacking and arson cases unless the suspect is proven to be a flight risk or risk to public safety. 

The law also eliminates cash bail, prohibits judges from considering a defendant’s previous behavior when determining whether he or she is a flight risk, and prevents law enforcement from charging a suspect with attempted escape for at least 48 hours after the person on electronic monitoring has left home without permission.

“I never, in my 40-years in this profession, ever thought I’d ever see anything close to this,” Will County State’s Attorney James Glasgow told Fox News. “The intent of this law is to destroy the criminal justice system in Illinois, and I’m not going to let that happen.” 

Glasgow is one of the highest-profile state prosecutors to come out against the law, but he is joined by 100 Democratic and 102 Republican state’s attorneys in Illinois who also oppose the law.

He pointed out that if the law takes effect, there are more than 300 inmates in his county’s jail alone who would be released on day 1, and another 300 inmates who would be released 90 days later.

“Have you ever heard of any government passing a law to release everyone in their jails? No one has ever done that before, and no one would ever think to do that,” Glasgow said. “That would be suicide.” 

He is suing Pritzker and the Illinois attorney general in hopes of preventing the law from taking effect.

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