Allen Bullock, an 18-year-old Baltimore rioter, turned himself in on the advice of his stepfather and is now being held in jail on $500,000 bail, reported The Guardian.
That bail is already an outrageous amount for someone who committed property damage crimes. However, it’s even more outrageous considering that Officer Caesar Goodson Jr., the driver of the police van carrying Freddie Gray, was held on $350,000 bail after being charged for murder.
Bullock was charged with eight misdemeanors including rioting and destruction of property.
“By turning himself in he also let me know he was growing as a man and he recognized what he did was wrong,” said Bullock’s stepfather, Maurice Hawkins. “But they are making an example of him and it is not right.”
The injustice and nonsensical nature of this “inequity” is outrageous because, as Addicting Info noted, people thought of as “stable” are generally given lower bail amounts than those seen as “unstable.” This is true even in cases of similar crimes.
According to Addicting Info:
People who don’t have a stable income are seen as flight risks, which is probably misguided because people who don’t have money typically can’t afford to leave and in Bullock’s case, he turned himself in – that has to mean something.
Keeping with unjust trends in the American criminal justice system, not only are black people disproportionately jailed more than whites, but they are given higher bond amounts than whites, too.
“There are still judicial officials who will, just based on skin color, set a higher bail because they believe that person may be more dangerous,” said Melissa Neal, a former researcher at the Justice Policy Institute, in 2012.
The system is unfairly structured against blacks in America. That’s what the Baltimore riots were all about in the first place. It’s wasn’t just about Freddie Gray; it was about every sin that the American establishment has committed against black people since the nation’s birth. The skewed bail bond system is just another facet.