Here Is What Will NOT Be Happening In Illinois As Of Monday

Written By BlabberBuzz | Tuesday, 19 September 2023 09:20
Views 7K

Illinois is set to implement a new law on Monday that will eliminate cash bail statewide, according to officials.

The law, known as the "Pretrial Fairness Act," is part of the larger "SAFE-T Act" and was deemed constitutional by the state's Supreme Court two months ago, despite facing legal challenges from numerous states' attorneys.

Under the new law, judges will have the responsibility of determining whether individuals accused of specific felonies or violent misdemeanors pose a risk to the community or another person and should be detained pretrial. They will also be required to assess the flight risk of the defendant.

Pretrial release can be denied for defendants charged with offenses such as aggravated discharge of a firearm, unlawful sales or delivery of firearms, human trafficking, child abduction, reckless homicide, hate crimes, threatening a public official, residential burglary, and child endangerment. Additionally, release can be denied if the defendant is charged with counts that include animal torture, driving under the influence causing great bodily harm, and driving under the influence resulting in bodily harm of a minor under the age of 16.


Furthermore, pretrial release can be denied for defendants charged with "forcible felonies," which encompass predatory criminal sexual assault of a child, first and second-degree murder, aggravated arson, kidnapping, robbery, burglary, and other similar offenses.

The bill emphasizes that all defendants should be presumed eligible for pretrial release, and the burden of proof lies with the state to demonstrate, by clear and convincing evidence, that the defendant has committed an offense listed in the bill and poses a threat to others or the community.


The law also stresses the importance of individualized decision-making regarding release, conditions of release, and detention prior to trial. It prohibits the use of risk assessment tools as the sole basis for denying pretrial release.

The Cook County Government expressed its readiness to implement the new law, including the new initial appearance and detention hearing processes. Cook County State's Attorney Kim Foxx highlighted the significance of this change, stating, "With the elimination of cash bail, Cook County stands as a beacon of justice where decisions are made on safety, not dollars. Together, with all our agencies and community stakeholders, we are confident in the successful rollout and the enduring positive impact of the Pretrial Fairness Act."

The implementation of this law marks a significant shift in the pretrial detention system in Illinois. By eliminating cash bail, the state aims to prioritize public safety and ensure that decisions regarding pretrial release are based on individualized assessments rather than financial resources.