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jail

Residents Sound Off About California $0 Bail During Coronavirus

in Around California

YUCAIPA (CBSLA) — Plans to relieve overcrowding inside jails by setting some low-level offenders free is concerning people in the community.

Dustin Evans, a suspected thief in San Bernardino County who one woman says she caught on camera stealing her Louis Vuitton purse, could soon walk free under that policy.

“He’s just gonna keep doing it because it’s allowed right now,” the victim, identified only as Krystal, said.

The state of California mandated no-bail for low-level misdemeanor and felony arrests to help slow the spread of coronavirus inside jails and some law enforcement officials don’t agree with the decision.

“The effects of zero-bail on the county could be devastating,” said San Bernardino County Sheriff John McMahon.

McMahon said the mandate is not in the best interest of the community.

“[It] may further embolden criminals to commit crimes,” he said.

Continue Reading on CBS Local Los Angeles

Coronavirus update April 12: Inmates to be released, more reports of people recovering

in News/People

On Monday between 150 and 350 inmates, or as much as a quarter of the jail population in Stanislaus County, will be released from custody as a result of a statewide emergency bail schedule intended to slow or prevent the spread of COVID-19 among the incarcerated population.

The Judicial Council of California on April 6 established the temporary bail schedule that reduced to $0 the bail for most misdemeanor and some low-level felony offenses. It applies to accused inmates whose cases have not been adjudicated and anyone arrested on the applicable crimes while the emergency rule is in place.

Continue Reading on The Modesto Bee

California Gave Billions in Taxpayer Dollars to Improve Jails. But That’s Not How These Sheriffs Are Spending It.

in crime

Two summers ago, the board of supervisors in Contra Costa County, California, faced a packed meeting room. On the agenda was a proposal to divert $1.5 million in state taxpayer money intended to ease jail overcrowding to other priorities of the local sheriff’s office.

Without the funds, Assistant Sheriff Matthew Schuler said, street patrols across the county would be sacrificed. “That loss would be drastic,” he told the board.

Continue Reading on Pro Publica

Two escaped murder suspects arrested, returned to California jail

in Local Roundup

Two murder suspects who escaped from a California county jail were captured on Wednesday morning, police said.

The Monterey County Sheriff's Office said Santos Samuel Fonseca, 21, and Jonathan Salazar, 20, were both located, arrested and transported back to the county after escaping the Monterey County Adult Detention Facility on Sunday.

Capt. John Thornburg of the Monterey County Sheriff's Office said the pair were turned over to deputies at around 5 a.m. after receiving a tip that led to their capture in Tijuana.

Continue Reading on UPI

California inmates escaped through a hole they cut in the ceiling, sheriff’s office says

in Local Roundup

The two inmates who escaped a Northern California jail Sunday cut a hole in the ceiling of their building, the Monterey County Sheriff's Office said.

Santos Samuel Fonseca, 21, and Jonathan Salazar, 20, identified a blind spot in their housing unit of the Monterey County Adult Detention Facility and cut through the sheet rock and metal screen to make a 22-inch hole in the bathroom ceiling, Capt. John Thornburg, a sheriff's office spokesman, told reporters Monday.
The inmates climbed through the ceiling and came down through a hatch that leads to a back door, he said. It appears they kicked the back door open and left the jail on foot, Thornburg said.
Continue Reading on CNN

An effort to stop overnight jail releases in California is rejected by Gov. Newsom

in Local Roundup

Ten years ago, Mitrice Richardson was released from the Los Angeles County sheriff’s Malibu/Lost Hills Station just after midnight, left to find her way home through a remote area, alone and on foot, with no money or phone.

When her body was located 11 months later, questions were raised about why the Sheriff’s Department let her go at an hour when there were few transportation options available and after she showed signs of a mental health crisis; she had been arrested after failing to pay her bill at a Malibu restaurant and exhibiting what was described as “strange behavior.”

Richardson’s case was one of the first late-night jail releases to draw scrutiny in California. But it wasn’t until another young black woman, Jessica St. Louis, died after leaving an Alameda County jail nine years later that California legislators sought to change a practice critics say is unfair and dangerous.

Continue Reading on Los Angeles Times

Rate of jail inmate deaths in San Diego County far exceeds other large California counties

in Local Roundup

More than 130 people have died in San Diego County jails since 2009, the year Bill Gore took over as sheriff. That’s an average higher than one inmate per month, every month, over the past 10 years.

Some are claimed by natural causes — chronic health conditions like heart disease and diabetes often found in people who end up in jail. Others are murdered or overdose on drugs.

Dozens have taken their own lives even though Gore and his top command staff say they do everything they can to identify suicidal inmates and treat mental illness.

“The Sheriff’s Department is committed to keeping inmates safe and is continuously looking for best practices in the delivery of mental health care,” the department said in a video posted on its website in May.

A six-month investigation by The San Diego Union-Tribune shows that the county’s jail mortality rate is the highest among California’s largest county jail systems. The grim history shows no sign of waning.

Continue Reading on The San Diego Union Tribune

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