The state of Illinois will soon implement a new bail reform law that will instantly release — with no bond — people arrested for crimes including second-degree murder, drug dealing and drunken driving.
The woefully misnamed “SAFE-T Act” that will take effect on Jan. 1 will eliminate cash bail for a long list of offenses in the Land of Lincoln.
The Safety, Accountability, Fairness and Equity-Today Act, passed in 2021, is styled as a “reform” of policing, pretrial practices and jails and prisons in the state.
One of the most immediate dangers this legislation imposes on the state’s law-abiding citizens is the elimination of cash bail for dangerous criminals.
Illinois State Rep. Patrick Windhorst (R, 118th District) recently told KFVS News, “there are a whole list of violent crimes, burglary, robbery, arson, kidnapping, almost all drug offenses even drug distribution, DUI offenses, even DUI offenses that are involving a fatality, that do not qualify for detention under the Illinois Safety Act. To me, that’s going to mean a lot of individuals are committing crimes and being released immediately, if not within a couple of days.”
This will embolden criminals across the state and will end up making police departments and jails a revolving door, letting dangerous criminals back out on the streets almost as soon as the police can grab them up.
At least Illinois finally has a concealed carry law, a provision that appears to be the last safety measure standing between innocent civilians and dangerous criminals.
The state of Illinois only passed its concealed carry laws in 2012, making it the last state in the union to allow citizens to arm themselves outside their homes. That right may get a serious workout now that criminals will be instantly released back into their element after arrest.
The implementation of the SAFE-T Act has been met with wide condemnation among Illinois’ law enforcement community.
Will County State’s Attorney James Glasgow, for one, called the law “literally the end of days” for the safety of Illinois citizens and police officers.
The SAFE-T Act “will destroy the city and the state of Illinois,” Glasgow added. “I don’t even understand — the people that supported it — why they can’t realize that.”
Glasgow also warned his constituents that more than 600 criminals will be released in a massive wave on Jan. 1, thanks to the new law.
He said that 640 people being held in the Will County Jail will have their bonds ended on Jan. 1– including 60 people charged with murder. Glasgow said he will not be able to hold anyone for more than 90 days if they demand a trial, after which they’ll get out, “no matter what crime they committed.”
Glasgow also blasted the state legislature for pushing through an 800-page bill in only two days.
“You’ve got legislators who aren’t lawyers, you’ve got legislators who weren’t criminal lawyers … trying to read all that in two days, “he said. “It was impossible.”
The new law will prevent law enforcement from ending situations that may escalate to stalking, rape and even assault and murder.
Grundy County Sheriff Ken Briley pointed out that today he can arrest someone for trespassing on a resident’s property. But after Jan. 1, he will only be allowed to “write him a ticket and leave,” he told WLS-TV.
That means that the trespasser will be left right there where he was found, leaving the confrontation still ongoing and raising the possibility that a property owner may take matters into his own hands, he told the news outlet.
This clearly will embolden criminals to up the ante and become more dangerous.
This bill puts both the police — who will likely curtail their activities that keep people safe — and the people themselves in danger.
Worse, New York has already shown what a bad idea this sort of bail “reform” is after it encountered a slew of problems when its state legislature issued similar new rules.
Stories of outrages committed by career criminals let out on no bail or minimal bail are growing by the day in the Empire State.
In May, for instance, a career criminal released on a $1 bail allegedly murdered a man on the New York City subway.
In another case, crowing that “I can’t be stopped,” a criminal with 139 arrests on his record gleefully thanked New York’s bail “reform” law for letting him out only hours after being arrest in 2020 on theft charges.
With the knowledge that they will be quickly let go thanks to the new law, crime has exploded in the Big Apple to its bloodiest phase in recent history.
The bail reform law is so confusing in New York that one judge noted he needs an eight-page cheat sheet in court to help him navigate who he is allowed to punish these days.
The Illinois law is also voluminous and confusing. Efforts are still being made by Democrats to add to it and by Republicans to repeal parts of it.
These disastrously soft-on-crime laws really bring home how important self-defense is in America today.
As our lawmakers tie the hands of the police and as the courts are weakened in the face of soaring crime rates, the last measure for security is the ability to defend oneself.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.