Knox County judges exercise right to remain silent on illegal bail

Bizar Male

Despite years of warnings that bail practices in Knox County violated the rights of the accused and state law, judges still are requiring accused citizens to fork out money for freedom, an ongoing Knox News investigation has found.

Now two national organizations have slammed the judges and demanded they offer those who are “unable to purchase their freedom” the protections given to them in the constitution. 

If the judges don’t change their practices of defaulting to requiring bail money before a trial, taxpayers could be on the hook for millions of dollars in legal fees and lawsuit damage awards, the newspaper has learned.

Attorneys with the Southern Poverty Law Center and the Civil Rights Corps, nonprofits groups that protect the rights of the poor, have filed notice they intend to sue Knox County if its judges don’t change their ways.

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