- Report Published -
|Pretrial Detention Decision Making Process|
|Virginia State Crime Commission|
|SJR 33 (1990)|
|During the 1990 session of the Virginia legislature, Delegate Wm. Roscoe Reynolds sponsored House Joint Resolution No. 79 (HJR 79) and Senator Joseph V. Gartlan, Jr. sponsored Senate Joint Resolution No. 33 (SJR 33), requesting and authorizing the Virginia State Crime Commission to "study and identify improvements to the decision-making process with respect to pretrial detention of persons accused of crimes." (See, Appendix A.) The identical bills were spurred by findings of the Commission on Prison and Jail Overcrowding that over half of the Commonwealth's jail population is awaiting trial and that a more efficient information delivery system on bail and bond decisions and use of risk assessment instruments to determine which accused offenders could be safely released before trial would improve the over crowding situation by reducing the length of pretrial detention.|
Section 9-125 of the Code of Virginia establishes and directs the Virginia State Crime Commission (VSCC) "to study, report, and make recommendations on all areas of public safety and protection. " Code of Virginia §9-127 provides that "the Commission shall have the duty and power to make such studies and gather information in order to accomplish its purpose, as set forth in §9-125, and to formulate its recommendations to the Governor and the General Assembly." Section 9-134 of the Code of Virginia authorizes the Commission to "conduct private and public hearings, and to designate a member of the Commission to preside over such hearings." The Virginia State Crime Commission, in fulfilling its legislative mandate, undertook the study of pretrial detention issues as requested and authorized by HJR 79 and SJR 33.