WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Congressman Scott Fitzgerald (WI-05) and U.S. Senator Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) introduced the Pretrial Release Reporting Act to require the Department of Justice (DOJ) to issue a report to Congress within 180 days detailing information on individuals released on bail and pretrial release from state courts charged with violent felony offenses.

Jurisdictions across the country have modified their bail practices to eliminate or deemphasize the use of monetary bail systems. The consequences of Milwaukee County’s soft bail policies were recently put on display when the Waukesha Christmas parade was attacked. These policies, coupled with efforts to decrease police funding, have made our communities less safe. This bill is the first of several proposals being considered by Congressman Fitzgerald to address weak bail policies.

“The community of Waukesha was rocked to its core last winter when Darrell Brooks violently took the lives of six community members and injured dozens more,” said Congressman Fitzgerald. “This incident could have been avoided and it exposed a severe shortcoming in the prosecutorial approach to bail and pre-trial release in Milwaukee County. Brooks should never have been released on such a trivial bail amount, and although we cannot turn back the clock, we must hold local leaders accountable moving forward. The Pretrial Release Report Act will do exactly that by requiring the DOJ to critically analyze how weak bail policies impact our communities.” 

“The current Democrat polices of catch and release of violent offenders within our criminal justice system has resulted in untold tragedies throughout America. In Wisconsin, six innocent people lost their lives and 62 others were injured during the Waukesha Christmas Parade because a violent criminal was released on low bail. This horrific tragedy never should have happened, but was the direct result of the low bail, no bail policies implemented by soft on crime district attorneys and pushed by the Biden Administration. The Pretrial Release Reporting Act will bring transparency the American public deserve and make everyone aware of how frequent violent offenders are released into their communities after posting meager bail, or none at all. The American public has the right to know how these low bail policies resulting from democrat governance are endangering their communities,” said Sen. Johnson.

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