Attorneys File Lawsuit
A group of attorneys filed a lawsuit against Harris County for violating the constitutional rights of people who were being processed on criminal charges. 40% of people who were arrested on non-violent misdemeanor charges were being incarcerated because they could not afford to pay the bond. The attorneys used videos of the hearings with the magistrates to show the abuse the individuals were subjected to by the judges.
Federal Judge Rules Against Harris County
After a federal judge watched the videos the attorneys had on bail hearings, the judge determined that Harris County had committed ‘tens of thousands of constitutional violations.’ The lawsuit was won in 2017 but the reforms from this lawsuit weren’t expected to be fully approved until 2019.
Cruelty Becomes the Norm
The attorney in the video makes a very valid point. He says, the people were, “…inflicting such pain and such cruelty on an everyday level to the point where that kind of brutality became normalized…” And that pain doesn’t only affect the arrested person. It affects that person’s family and friends too. You can read the pain of that cruelty in so many of the comments that are left on this website. It’s as if the are being punished because someone they care about is in jail. Please take the time to watch the video below.