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Government & Politics

Task Force Examining Ohio's Bail System Considers Risk Assessments

pic of gavel, handcuffs, cash
A task force is looking into changing Ohio's bail system process.

The Ohio Supreme Court chief justice is gathering a team of experts to examine the state’s bail system. The task force will determine whether or not the system is unfair for people who are arrested but held on expensive bail before they can argue their case. 

Daniel Dew with the conservative-leaning Buckeye Institute said a high bail can keep a person in jail when it’s not necessary.

“We’re separating them from their families, we’re separating them from their jobs and so just a small amount of time in jail can really be detrimental to a person’s family life and to their work life," Dew said.

Other groups in the task force include the ACLU of Ohio, law enforcement, court clerks, and prosecutors. The panel is observing presentations on best practices from local and national groups.

Dew said the state should create a uniform baseline for assessing someone’s risk before creating bail. That assessment would determine if that person is a public safety risk or a possible flight risk.