Cali sheriff warns Dems’ zero cash bail order mandates repeat felony child abusers go free

Left-wing Democrats who run California continue to demonstrate their disdain for public safety, as evidenced by a sweeping new “zero cash bail” mandate that one appalled sheriff says also applies to suspected child abusers.

In an interview with local affiliate Fox 11, San Bernardino County Sheriff John McMahon said that thanks to the abject lunacy of the state’s Judicial Council, he was forced to release a repeat felony child abuse suspect immediately after arrest.

And he’ll also have to release scores more potentially dangerous criminals back out onto the streets under the mandate.

“I just don’t think it’s good government, and it’s not safe to force the release of people on zero bail,” McMahon said. “The people that we have in jail, for the most part, are felons.”

The local TV affiliate noted:

The mandate took effect last Monday after California’s Judicial Council issued an emergency rule, ordering that all misdemeanors and some low-level felonies will now have cash bail set at zero, with 13 exceptions for serious and violent felonies.

“We’ve already started releasing those fresh arrests that weren’t on the list of 13,” McMahon said. “The first night into Tuesday morning, there were 6 people arrested on felonies and were released on zero bail.”

The sheriff noted with no small amount of derision and irony that felony child abuse is not on the list of 13 exemptions — and obviously, it ought to be, given that children are much more vulnerable than adults.

“Felony child abuse does not fit into that list of 13, so even though this guy had a prior for domestic violence conviction for child abuse, he gets arrested for child abuse again, and then he gets released on zero bail with a court date in July,” McMahon said. “So that just doesn’t make any sense to me, maybe I’m missing something, but that doesn’t seem to me to be the right thing to do to protect the citizens of our county. If that person is in our custody, we can protect the victim, if he’s not, we can’t.”

As part of “social and criminal justice reform,” the Democratic left’s war on law, order, and common sense is spreading beyond any rational measure.

Bail, you see, is ‘racist’ and ‘bigoted’ because it ‘disproportionately’ puts ‘poor minorities’ at a disadvantage — to say nothing of their alleged victims, who are necessarily ‘disadvantaged’ as targets of criminal behavior.

The fact is, requiring the accused to put up cash bail has nothing to do with race, ethnicity, religion, or any other social or cultural quality. It has to do with ensuring that defendants return for their trials.

And the concept stems from our founding, as The Heritage Foundation notes:

The Eighth Amendment Bail Clause prohibits bail that is excessive—without regard to whether it is unaffordable. The fundamental purpose of bail is to tie a defendant to a jurisdiction and guarantee his appearance at trial. While several states are considering various bail reforms, some advocates have argued that “any bail practices that result in incarceration based on poverty violate the Fourteenth Amendment.” The text and history of the Eighth Amendment, as well as U.S. Supreme Court precedent, do not support that argument. 

But to leftist Democrats, none of that seems to matter. They have declared cash bail ‘unjust’ and so the only way to rectify that is to let people go who a) are often very dangerous people; and b) now have less incentive to show up to court.

As for McMahon, he’s certain that some of these dangerous people are now back on the streets.

“In today’s times, you have to work pretty hard to get into jail, and the folks that are in custody are generally the bad folks, and they’re in jail for a reason,” he said.


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Jon Dougherty


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