Nearly 100 murder suspects free on home confinement in Chicago area
Nearly 100 murder suspects in the Chicago area are enjoying the comfort of home — thanks to soft-on-crime judges and criminal justice reforms designed to keep defendants out of jail, according to reports.
Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart said 2,600 defendants are under home confinement and electronic monitoring as part of the pre-trial program he runs.
“Home monitoring is not a program for people charged with violent offenses,” Dart told CBS Chicago on Monday.
“Seventy-five to 80 percent of my people on home monitoring are charged with a violent offense,” he continued. “I have about 100 people on home monitoring who are charged with murder.”
In addition to the murder suspects, 852 people in the pre-trial program face aggravated gun possession charges and another 40 are charged with attempted murder, according to WGN9.
“When we first started getting the more serious offenders, there were just a handful of them and I literally did … a car in front of those houses,” Dart said.
Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot was stunned by the data.
“Do you feel safer knowing these numbers? I don’t think any sane person does,” she said, according to the outlet.
Dart and Lightfoot have blamed the release of violent suspects on judges following a 2017 reform limiting the use of cash bail.
“The Cook County EM system is fundamentally broken in a way that is making our city unsafe,” Lightfoot said in December, asking Chief Judge Tim Evans to keep those charged with violent offenses behind bars.
The judge denied the mayor’s plea, saying her “proposal seems to require that defendants facing certain allegations be considered guilty until proven innocent.”
Chicago is located in Cook County and accounts for more than 40 percent of the state’s population.
The shocking numbers come as Manhattan’s district attorney is already facing backlash from local politicians and the NYPD’s top cop for his progressive policies that downgrade certain felonies, including in most armed robbery cases, and seek to keep convicts out of prison.