The brother of the Parkland shooter was recently arrested for trespassing on the school campus where his brother killed 18 students and teachers, and is facing a set of unusually high penalties for a second degree misdemeanor, typically does not result in jail time or heavy fines. For a trespassing, a crime that has a maximum fine of $500 and 60 days in jail, the defendant’s bond is set at $500,000, according to CNN. The defendant was there to reflect on what had happened, had only skateboarded through the campus, and had not entered any buildings, yet he is being forced to take a psychological evaluation, is not allowed to communicate with his brother who is also in custody, and is being electronically monitored. His residence has also been searched for weapons. While in this case it is apparent that he is being punished for the high profile nature of his brother’s crime, in plenty of other cases bond is set to extreme levels–amounts that defendants who were arrested, but not yet charged, for low-level crimes cannot pay, and are forced to sit in jail for weeks and months until their hearings.
Bail System is Rigged Against the Poor and Minorities
Commercial bail bonds companies exist only in the U.S. and the Philippines–a country with a government known for corruption and committing human rights violations. According to the Huffington Post, the system in place here in the U.S. allows bail bonds companies to pull in $2 billion in revenue per year at the expense of mostly low income people who have been charged with small time crimes. Bail bonds are just another way that the U.S. criminal justice system is rigged against low income people and people of color, whose bonds are statistically higher than whites. African Americans aged 18 through 29 receive the highest bonds of any group, while blacks and Latinos are both more likely than whites to face bond amounts that they cannot afford to pay.
How a West Palm Beach Criminal Defense Attorney Can Help You
Hiring an experienced criminal defense attorney before your bond is set will ensure that you have a strong advocate on your side to ensure that bond is set at a reasonable level. If your bond has already been set, there are a few options that your attorney can take. These include filing a motion to reduce the bond, or posting a realty bond with property owned by you or another person, such as a family member or friend. Our attorneys will fight for your right to remain innocent until proven guilty, and to keep you out of a lengthy jail term before you have even had a trial. Too many Florida residents spend weeks and months behind bars because they cannot afford the incredibly high bonds set against them. The West Palm Beach criminal defense team here at the Skier Law Firm is here to ensure that this does not happen to you. Call us today at (561) 220-3355.