For Immediate Release: June 6, 2018
Contact: Administrative Office of the Courts: Leigh Anne Hiatt, APR, Public Information Officer, 502-573-2350, cell 859-619-7916, firstname.lastname@example.org
Pretrial Justice Institute: Fiona Druge, email@example.com, 646-755-6126
FRANKFORT, Ky. – Today Kentucky became part of a cohort of states that are committed to commonsense pretrial reform and supported by the Pretrial Justice Institute’s nationally recognized expertise and resources.
Chief Justice of Kentucky John D. Minton Jr. and Cherise Fanno Burdeen, chief executive officer of the Pretrial Justice Institute, held a joint news conference at the Capitol in Frankfort to announce that Kentucky Pretrial Services, a department within the Administrative Office of the Courts, will take part in 3DaysCountTM.
3DaysCount is a national initiative to make pretrial justice safer, fairer and more effective by reducing the number of people in jail without sacrificing public safety. Pretrial is defined as the period from a person’s first contact with law enforcement through the resolution of any resulting charges, usually through trial, plea or dismissal.
“There’s a growing call for reform against financial bail, which can penalize the poor,” Chief Justice Minton said. “Kentucky Pretrial Services is joining the wave of pretrial justice reform, which is propelling changes to bail systems across the country. I appreciate the ongoing work of the court system’s Pretrial Bail Practices Committee and of all of our judges who are working to improve alternatives for pretrial release. As part of 3DaysCount, Kentucky will have access to national best practices and the support of the Pretrial Justice Institute as we work to educate the judiciary, law enforcement and the public about the importance of pretrial reform.”
3DaysCount is based on the premise that even three days in jail can leave many people less likely to appear in court and more likely to commit new crimes because of the stress incarceration places on jobs, housing and family connections, and that commonsense solutions can lead to better outcomes, enhanced public safety and more effective use of public resources.
“PJI is delighted to welcome Kentucky to 3DaysCount,” said CEO Burdeen. “Kentucky has long been a leader in pretrial innovation and our work together through 3DaysCount will help the state ensure that these improvements reach their full potential. By joining the 3DaysCount community, Kentucky is adding momentum to a national movement that is using commonsense improvements to make communities safer, enhance outcomes for people who come in contact with law enforcement, and use scarce public resources more effectively. We look forward to working with Chief Justice Minton and other leaders in Kentucky to realize these important goals.”
Kentucky’s participation in 3DaysCount came about from the work of the court system’s Pretrial Bail Practices Committee. In 2017, Chief Justice Minton asked a group of 14 circuit and district judges to create a new risk assessment tool and recommend ways to improve current pretrial practices and court rules in an effort to ensure a fair and just pretrial process for all defendants.
During calendar year 2017 in Kentucky, more serious crimes (A, B and C felonies) only resulted in 10 percent of the arrest population. That translates to 90 percent of defendants charged with violations, misdemeanors and Class D felonies. Of the defendants arrested, 37 percent were held in custody until their court dates.
Those speaking at the news conference were:
PJI is a nationally recognized resource for legal and evidence-based solutions to common pretrial justice challenges. As part of its 3DaysCount Campaign, PJI has been working with partners in Washington, Connecticut, Illinois, New Hampshire and the territory of Guam to:
About Money Bail & Unnecessary Pretrial Incarceration
About the Pretrial Justice Institute
Since 1977, PJI has been a national resource for policy makers at the federal, state and local levels. PJI’s core purpose is to advance safe, fair and effective juvenile and adult pretrial justice practices and policies that honor and protect all people, which it achieves by monitoring the state of and advocating for pretrial justice in America; convening, educating and supporting stakeholders to transform their colleagues and systems; and demonstrating that change is possible by working directly with jurisdictions on implementation.
About Administrative Office of the Courts and Kentucky Pretrial Services
The AOC is the operations arm for the Kentucky Court of Justice and supports the activities of nearly 3,300 state court employees and 404 elected justices, judges and circuit court clerks. As the fiscal agent for the state court system, the AOC also executes the Judicial Branch budget. Kentucky Pretrial Services became a national model for pretrial reform after Kentucky become only the second state in the country to abolish commercial bail bonding in 1976.