If you’re in jail awaiting trial and wondering about bail, you’re not alone. Thousands of people across America are in the same situation, including hundreds in Colorado. But can you afford cash bail? And how many people are sitting in jail because they don’t have the money to get out pretrial? According to PolitiFact, there’s no definitive answer to that question, but here are some about bail bonds to be aware of in Jefferson County, Arapahoe County, or Denver County.
Most bondsmen charge 10 percent of the value of the bond, which is a typical charge. You might be able to pay this amount in installments. However, you will need to pay them a deposit before you or your loved one leaves jail.
If you’re paying a defense attorney, rely on that person to recommend a qualified bail bonding company in Jefferson County or elsewhere in Denver.
Talk to a duty detention officer about a recommendation. They can offer impartial information on which bail bonding company is worth the money, and which ones to avoid.
Whether looking for reasonably priced laser eye surgery or searching for a qualified bail bonding professional in Arapahoe County, never go with the lowest bidder, so to speak. Any bail bonds company that offers a five percent or lower bail fee should be avoided. Why? Chances are their prices are based on employing inexperienced staff, or they just don’t know what they’re doing.
There are companies that will look for a quality bail bondsman on your behalf. A third-party company will find the best qualified bondsman for your particular situation, and help you get released as soon as possible.
There are websites that evaluate bail bonding companies, and they are an indispensable resource for finding a qualified professional. Look for companies with good customer feedback but be wary of multiple glowing reviews – which could be fake.
Maybe you have a friend or family member who’s been in your situation. Talk to someone you can trust and ask about their experience, ask for advice. Someone else’s experience can influence your decision.
Whether it’s the cumulative effects of COVID-19 or something else, public sentiment about the need for cash bail reform seems to be turning back on itself. Saying the system is stacked against people of color, other minorities, or the poor, doesn’t cut it anymore and can no longer justify the wholesale end of the cash bail system.
The concepts of “safety” versus “justice” aren’t separate issues, says Tampa, Florida attorney Jeff Korzenik. “Criminal justice reforms are often perceived as offering a trade-off between public safety and greater justice for people with criminal records. This is a false choice and a way of thinking that could ultimately undermine progress on both fronts. Understanding the important role that employment plays in rehabilitation and the barriers to such employment offers a new framework for evaluating public policies.”
Korzenik argues that recidivism is directly tied to high unemployment rates for newly released defendants, and policies and regulations which restrict employment opportunities for people with a criminal background need to be restructured.
Proposition 20 in California also is under fire. Per a recent editorial in The Mercury News: "The last thing California needs is a return to the tough-on-crime days of the 1990s that largely failed to lower crime rates and resulted in massive prison overcrowding and skyrocketing costs to taxpayers.”
The editorial goes on to state the proposal would be a return to the disastrous “lock ’em up and throw away the key” approach of the 1990s and that “Restricting parole opportunities takes away inmates’ incentives for addressing their problems. California paid a heavy price for its heavy-handed 1990s approach to crime.”
Revamping America’s fractured and hemorrhaging criminal justice system will take more effort than acquiescing to cash bail opponents.
If you’ve been incarcerated in Denver County, here’s what you need to know about the bail system.
There are four methods permitted under Colorado law to get out of jail: Released on your own recognizance, usually for a misdemeanor; cash bond for defendants 18 and older; surety bond, where a guarantor, someone besides the defendant, agrees to pay 90 percent or more of the bond; property bond, which is rarely accepted, and involves the defendant using the value of property – a home, for instance – to post bail.
In Colorado, defendants can post bail for themselves, have it paid by a friend or relative, or hire a bail bondsman to pay the bail.
In Colorado, the lowest charge for bail is $50, but the state allows a bondsman to charge up to 15 percent premium of the bail plus other administrative costs. As an example, if your bail is set at $20,000, a bail bonding company could charge you $3,000 plus administrative costs, and that’s money you won’t get back. A cash bond doesn’t require a premium or a bail bond agent. The whole amount of the bail has to be paid and all of the money – minus other charges and fees – comes back to the defendant or a co-signor. Contact Tayler Made Bail Bonding for more information about bail bonding and the services we offer throughout the state of Colorado.