Bail Bonds: Innocent Until Proven Guilty
Bail bonds are the enforcers of the constitution. Our founding fathers ensured that we have the right to be treated as equal citizens until proven guilty. But society, and often our own justice system, views defendants as “guilty until proven innocent.”
Bail Lets You Keep Your Innocence
In America, you are innocent until proven guilty. Bail is offered to keep this stance. But other countries, such as Italy, have a completely different attitude towards the accused. While Italy does follow the “innocent until proven guilty” theory, they do not offer bail. Instead, they’re allowed to hold accused (without charging them) for up to a year. They don’t treat the accused as innocents.
Even in America, you can quickly be labeled as guilty even before your picture is taken. What’s worse is if you can’t make bail, or when you are denied bail, you are in no better condition than those in Italy. You are “guilty” in the sense that you are already serving the sentence for the crime. That’s what bail is all about—giving citizens a chance to prove their case while living their life normally as innocents.
Why Bail Bonds Exist
So bail exists to still allow you to keep your freedom until trial. But what happens when you can’t afford bail? In the Eight Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, excessive bail is prohibited. But we do it all the time. The crime may be serious, or perhaps the defendant is a flight risk. But even misdemeanor cases can require excessive bail. The average person isn’t going to be able to pay a $5,000 bail; even a $1,000 bail is impossible for the paycheck-to-paycheck family.
But most people can usually find a way to pay $100 or $500 dollars. While you won’t get your money back, bail bonds companies only require 10% of bail. Bail bonds are the essential asset to the justice system. They ensure that the bail isn’t excessive enough to keep you or your loved one in jail for a crime they have not been tried for.
Bail Bonds Ensure Equality
Despite the bail system’s advantages, many still see bail bond companies as crooks who try to take advantage of the unfortunate. But in reality, bail bonds allows the unfortunate and the poor to get out of jail for crimes they have not been tried for yet. The rich, if accused of a crime, could easily pay their bail and step out of jail. If there were no bail bonds, more of the middle class and poor would be forced to stay in jail until trial, while the rich would walk free—innocent or not. Bail bonds prevent further class division and maintain equality.
Anyone against the bail system, or bail bonds, is against the important rights that it helps enforce. The constitution’s “innocent until proven guilty” requires that we treat the accused as innocents. In order to do so, we need bail to allow them to live their life normally until trial. Bail bonds makes the cost reasonable, and ensure that everyone’s rights are protected.