California has been the epicenter of the Criminal Justice Reform/Bail Reform movement. Our guest is Bill Armstrong who is the President of the California Bail Agents Association. California has seen several attempts to reform and get rid of the bail industry. These changes can be traced back to when the State changed many felony offenses and made them misdemeanor offenses and then prosecutors in several urban areas decided that they would no longer prosecute these crimes. This proposition and decisions of prosecutors started the slide of the state of California into chaos. Now businesses are closing because either they cannot withstand wholesale shoplifting to the tune of $25,000.00 a day or the employers cannot provide a safe place for their employees to work.
Since then California's legislature has attempted to go even further. But the votes has refused to go along. California attempted to adopt the New Jersey Plan, but voters said no. But the legislature's attempts to initiate bail reform has continued.
As we continue to shine a light on bail reform/criminal justice reform failures, it is becoming more and more clear that reform is not the goal, but decriminalization is. Voters would never support it so reformers have sold it as "reform."
California is starting to see the light. Help us spread the word to the rest of the country.
Bill Armstrong is a third generation bondsman. Bill's family has been continually writing bail in LA County for over 90 years dating back to Bill's grandfather.