California Becomes First State to Eliminate Cash Bail Before Trial
California will become the first state to end cash bail for suspects awaiting trial under a bill signed into law Tuesday by Governor Jerry Brown. The new bill, which will take effect in October 2019, replaces the bail process with a risk-assessment system. Most suspects arrested for nonviolent misdemeanors will be released within 12 hours of being booked under the new law, while those facing serious, violent felonies will not be eligible for this pretrial release. The law also allows the policy-making body for California courts, the Judicial Council, to create guidelines to reshape pretrial policies.