The state Supreme Court rolled out rules last year saying Missouri judges can only charge bail fees to help ensure that defendants will show up to court or if they pose a danger to others.
West Plains State Representative David Evans, a former judge, is proposing to clarify in the rules that judges have the discretion to release or require bond. During a Missouri House committee hearing, Darrell Moore with the Missouri Association of Prosecuting Attorneys says he backs the plan.
Critics of the court’s bail rules have said violent criminals have been released from jail. No one spoke in opposition to House Bill 1519. The committee has voted in favor of the bill. Another committee is reviewing the legislation.