California County Tries Longer Jail Time to Stop Repeat Offenders

A new pilot program in Santa Clara County, California hopes to tackle the problem of repeat offenders by simply keeping them in jail longer, reports Ian Cull for NBC Bay Area. The program, designed by Santa Clara County supervising deputy DA Marisa McKeown, gives arresting officers the opportunity to now offer judges an opinion on whether they think the person is a risk and why they believe that person should have a higher bail to help ensure they remain behind bars until their first court appearance. McKeown believes it will keep repeat offenders in jail longer, and prevent them from committing more crimes. The public defender’s office says holding people longer doesn’t work, and that the program violates a Supreme Court decision from two years ago that requires courts to find the least restrictive alternative to incarceration. The pilot program runs through the end of the year.

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