Chief: Quincy police will be ready for ‘no cash bail’ changes

Published: Jul. 18, 2023 at 1:29 PM CDT
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QUINCY (WGEM) - Following a ruling by the Illinois Supreme Court on Tuesday upholding the constitutionality of a state law that will end cash bail in September, Quincy Police Chief Adam Yates issued a statement reporting that Quincy Police will be ready for the changes.

Yates stated the Quincy Police Department, Adams County Sheriff’s Department and Adams County State’s Attorney’s Office met in late 2022 to prepare for the changes that were initially set to go into effect Jan 1. He stated police would work over the next 60 days to ensure they are ready for implementation on Sept. 18.

“There are still concerns that pretrial release will have an adverse effect on crime prevention, crime victim’s rights and the safety and security of our community,” Yates said. “Changes were made during the previous veto session that corrected some deficiencies highlighted last fall. Only time will tell if these changes make Illinois communities safer.”

Adams County Deputy Chief Public Defender Chris Pratt said it levels the playing field between the accused who can post bail, and those who cannot afford to.

Pratt said any police organizations have fought against the act due to public safety concerns.

Pratt said, he believes more people will end up in jail than they currently have now.

“The people who you see who end up in jail tend to perhaps be of a lower income bracket, who depending on regardless of what they’re charged with end up and stay in jail, it will now be people with higher level and more violent allegations who stay in jail, regardless of what they make,” Pratt said. “And you can look back in Adams County of individuals with more serious charges with violent charges with sexual offense charges even in the last 12 months who have very serious charges who have been able to post massive amounts of money and been able to get out on bond,” Pratt said.

Chris Pratt thinks, in Adams County and across Illinois, we’ll see a more broad demographic of those who are incarcerated.

“People are still going to be getting their day in court and people are still going to be held in accountable after they get their day in court if they’re found guilty or they, plead guilty but it’s not just a matter of everyone’s going to be let out of the jail nobody’s going to be be kept in jail that’s not accurate and I think it’s a little bit of fear mongering from people that oppose some of these changes,” Pratt said.

Pratt said he expects the workload to increase for courthouse officials when this goes into effect on Sept. 18.

He said a committee will meet to discuss the changes that will come to the courthouse, like bond hearings being changed to pre-trial detention hearings.

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