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Beyond ridiculous, bordering on insane

by Ron Holdraker
November 27, 2021

Remember the days when a person committed a serious crime and there were consequences? Perhaps a really naughty person who either beat their wife senseless, raped a child, or stole a great deal of merchandise, or money went to jail, pending bail.

Oh, wait, the arrested person is a predicate offender and gets let out based upon their good character and the knowledge they most certainly will appear in court on their court date. The offender is a serious drug addict, most likely committing crimes to feed their habit, over and over again.

There most certainly is a limit to just how liberal an allowance one gives to crime. The overly liberal view of crime is that every person has some good built into them, therefore we must put a cap on incarceration, either before conviction, or after. Remember a person is most definitely innocent until proven guilty.

The bail-less arrests started in more liberal states and spread east. Wherever more liberal governments took hold, laws were changed, penalties reduced. Then came the very liberal concept of ordering police departments to quit supplying mug shots. Luckily, this affected only the State Police and local agencies/mayors/politicians without balls.

The reasons given for the no mug-policy ranged from innocent until proven guilty, or due to the fact that some unscrupulous outfits/publications used the mugs as a form of blackmail. - Either pay to keep it out, or it gets published. This, of course, prevented legitimate newspapers and media from using mug shots. 

We were luckily not one of the agencies denied mug shots, except for State Police and the Village of Newark (only recently). This, by the way, irked many troopers and upper state police hierarchy. Again luckily, we had amassed a huge library of prior offenders (WHAT?) still offending.

As soon as jails began to empty due to cashless bail and lower sentences for more serious crimes, jails began to layoff guards and prisons across the states began shuttering.

Don’t get me wrong, I do believe both state and local incarcerations needed to be reduced, but lowering standards for incarcerations was not the only solution.

In Wayne County we had/have a very efficient Pre-Trail release program that put restrictions on those headed for extended jail stays due to the lack of bail monies. The program was very successful and needed to be duplicated across the state.

Also, the prison terms for more serious crimes needed study and drastic changes. New York, with its uber-ultra, overly liberal overtones decided to throw the baby out with the bath water.

There are few, if any, state or local police agencies happy with the current state of affairs. All agencies are wasting a great deal of time and money chasing down either repeat offenders, or those who  fail to appear on consigned court dates. It has come to the point that bench warrants for those who fail to appear for court dates are appearing for the very same people, over and over again. Why show up for court when you can delay court appearances and not suffer the consequences of crime when there is no real penalty for just skipping court.

The state politicians should put their heads together with police, instead of butting heads with them. Come up with a reasonable, justified system for arrests, courts and incarcerations before this state becomes a wasteland of stupid repeat crime and offenders. 

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