Hays County Inmates are not receiving timely trials

dc.contributor.advisorFox, Kym
dc.contributor.authorGage, Abby
dc.date.accessioned2023-08-08T17:34:46Z
dc.date.available2023-08-08T17:34:46Z
dc.date.issued2023-05
dc.description.abstractAccording to the most recent data from the Hays County Jail Dashboard, the majority of inmates are considered pretrial inmates, meaning they have yet to be convicted of a crime and are still awaiting trial. When an individual must wait for trial, they are given the option to bond out of jail or wait in jail for the entire period until a trial is held. Those of lower socioeconomic class are disproportionately affected by this, as they struggle to afford bail. On average in Hays County, pretrial inmates sit in jail for 110 days. Through my research, I have endeavored to answer the questions of why the pretrial process in Hays County is substantially lengthy, what implications high bonds have on members of the community– specifically members belonging to underrepresented groups– and which solutions are viable for lowering the duration inmates await trial. In order to draw conclusions about the state of pretrial detention in Hays County, I have taken a journalistic approach by analyzing data from the Hays County Jail dashboard and interviewing an array of criminal justice experts, criminal justice advocacy groups, and local public officials to gain insight into the data. From my data analysis and interview processes, I have concluded that the state of pretrial detention in Hays County, if not rectified, is nearing potential violations of human rights and the Sixth Amendment. In light of this, I have evaluated the potential solutions of mandating lower bonds, lowering penalties for specific non-violent crimes, and implementing pretrial diversion programs as viable options for achieving a more equitable justice system in Hays County. Furthermore, these solutions all pose broader recommendations for reforming the pretrial detention programs in other Texas counties.
dc.description.departmentHonors College
dc.formatText
dc.format.extent15 pages
dc.format.medium1 file (.pdf)
dc.identifier.citationGage, A. (2023). Hays County inmates are not receiving timely trials. Honors College, Texas State University.
dc.identifier.urihttps://hdl.handle.net/10877/17070
dc.language.isoen
dc.subjectpretrial
dc.subjectpretrial detention
dc.subjectHays County
dc.subjectcriminal justice
dc.subjectcriminal justice reform
dc.subjectHays County jail
dc.subjectHonors College
dc.titleHays County Inmates are not receiving timely trials
thesis.degree.departmentHonors College
thesis.degree.disciplineJournalism and Mass Communication
thesis.degree.grantorTexas State University
txstate.documenttypeHonors Capstone

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