Politicians love to come up with clever acronyms that make bad legislation sound like something voters actually want. That’s exactly what they did with the so-called “SAFE-T Act” in Illinois.
Based on the title, you might expect that this law would have something to do with keeping people safe, right? Think again. What the SAFE-T Act really does is eliminate cash bail for people who commit heinous felonies such as second-degree murder, arson, drug-induced homicide, robbery, kidnapping, aggravated battery, burglary, intimidation, aggravated driving under the influence, fleeing and eluding, drug offenses, and threatening a public official.
And just in case you were wondering – no, that doesn’t mean that people who commit those crimes will be sitting in jail until their trial. Just the opposite, in fact. Under the SAFE-T Act, starting on January 1, 2023, accused murderers, arsonists, kidnappers, and other violent criminals will not be in jail at all before their trial. They will be free to roam the streets as before, despite the fact that they are potentially dangerous and undoubtedly desperate.
The only exception is if a prosecutor can prove to a judge with “clear and convincing evidence” that the defendant is either a flight risk or presents a “specific” threat to the community. The charges against them, in other words, are not enough to keep them jailed – the prosecutor must find substantial additional evidence that they are likely to commit another crime…
by DaQuawn Bruce. Real Clear Politics, 10/26/22