Skip to main content

Professor Alison M. Siegler, Illinois Fellow, Publishes Article on Federal Bail Reform for The New York Times

March 29, 2021, Fellows in the news

Professor Alison M. Siegler, Illinois Fellow and founder and director of the Federal Criminal Justice Clinic at the University of Chicago Law School, has co-authored an article on bail reform and the federal justice system for The New York Times. The op-ed, entitled "How Did the 'Worst of the Worst' Become 3 Out of 4?", argues that new attorney general Judge Merrick Garland has an important opportunity to prioritize federal bail reform and "[disrupt] the culture of detention that pervades the ranks of federal prosecutors".

Siegler and Harris note that 40 years ago, Congress created the "presumption of detention" as a means of locking up the "worst of the worst" offenders before trial. Today, its use has ballooned far beyond its initial intent and the statute "nearly every person awaiting trial in a federal drug case" is deprived of their right to freedom while awaiting trial. They suggest that Judge Garland enact policies to "limit pretrial jailing to cases where it is genuinely necessary", among other reforms.

Read the article here.

« Return to Fellows in the News

Site design by Webitects

© 2021 American Bar Foundation (AmericanBarFoundation.org)
750 North Lake Shore Drive
Chicago, IL 60611-4403
(312) 988-6500
Contact Us
Contact the Fellows
Media Contacts
Privacy policy
Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in ABF publications are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the American Bar Foundation or the American Bar Association. The AMERICAN BAR FOUNDATION, ABF and related seal trademarks as used by the American Bar Foundation are owned by the American Bar Association and used under license.