Judge Harper doesn’t understand bail's purpose

2013-09-29T00:00:00Z Judge Harper doesn’t understand bail's purpose nwitimes.com
September 29, 2013 12:00 am

The function of bail is to guarantee a defendant appears in court, not to enrich the court. Porter Superiori Court Judge Mary Harper sets bail, then immediately discounts the bond by 90 percent! This would make her the criminal’s choice.

The 10 percent bail system is a scheme to raise cash for the courts, nothing more. Harper must believe the public is flat stupid to believe taking 10 percent cash on a bond is more effective than a bail bond guaranteeing 100 percent of the bond.

Bail agents monitor defendants pending trial. They involve family members who guarantee the bond and provide further supervision. When a defendant flees, the bail agent is incentivized to return the defendant to custody at no cost to the taxpayer.

The Porter County Sheriff posts outstanding warrants. One out of two warrants are for failure to appear. That’s a 50 percent failure rate, not 5 percent, as Harper would have us believe.

- Mike Whitlock, Indianapolis

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