Wilk denounces Senate-approved bill setting bail at $0 for most crimes

State Sen. Scott Wilk (pictured) and other local legislators reconvened Monday for a second year of their two-year session in Sacramento. Courtesy of Scott Wilk

California Senate Republicans, led by Sen. Scott Wilk, R-Santa Clarita, voted against legislation that would set bail at $0 for most misdemeanors and felonies.  

Senate Bill 262 passed with a three-quarters majority of the Senate despite Republicans’ objections. 

“Today, Democrats doubled down on an idea rejected by voters and already proven to be dangerous to our communities,” Wilk said. “Social experiments are one thing on paper, but by listening to law enforcement and crime victims, it was pretty clear these policies failed in real life.” 

The bill would make exceptions for certain crimes, including serious and violent felonies, domestic violence offenses, stalking, hate crimes, human trafficking and 13 others. 

If a court deems bail is necessary to protect the public and the victim or to ensure an arrested person shows up in court, it would be able to consider the arrested person’s ability to pay when setting the bail, according to the bill. 

In 2020, 57% of California voters voted against Proposition 25, repealing 2018 legislation approved that would have ended cash bail and replaced it with risk assessments designed to determine an arrested person’s likelihood of appearing for trial. 

The bill is now under consideration in the Assembly. 

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