Bail should be granted to most people awaiting trial, as they are innocent until proven guilty. Obviously not for the most serious cases such as murder.
But when someone has a history of offending on bail, or multiple previous convictions – then sticking them out on bail is just a recipe for creating further victims of crime. Especially that often any additional offences while on bail will not lead to greater punishment.
Now look at this case reported by Anna Leask:
A teenager on bail when he robbed an 81-year-old woman, breaking her hip and wrist and disabling her for life, has been sentenced to home detention.
But Darren Fidow’s elderly victim wants him jailed and is demanding a harsher sentence.
Patricia Sutcliffe’s hip and wrist were badly broken when she was robbed in 2011. She was in hospital for more than three months, is in constant pain and can no longer walk without a crutch.
Auckland Crown Solicitor Simon Moore, QC, is considering an appeal. The Crown originally sought a sentence of more than five years’ jail.
The sentence is bad enough. But look at the history.
Fidow was on bail facing a burglary charge when he robbed her.
In June 2011, Fidow was charged with aggravated robbery. He appeared in court and was released on bail.
Fidow was arrested again in February last year for breaching supervision conditions and was warned and re-bailed.
He was also arrested in June after failing to appear in court. He was remanded in custody after evading police for several months, but released again in July on electronic bail.
Days later, after a scheduled court appearance, Fidow was caught burgling another house. This time he was remanded in custody, but in October, he was bailed again to Odyssey House, for alcohol abuse treatment.
What is the bet he breaches his home detention?