A 57-year-old woman was recently attacked on a New York subway by a man who smeared his own feces on her face, hair, neck, shoulder and back, in apparent retaliation for her not wishing to talk with him. The man, identified as 37-year-old Frank Abrokwa, was subsequently arrested and charged. As it turns out, he had an extensive record of 44 arrests on a variety of charges, some violent, including hitting two different men and spitting on another as he screamed anti-Semitic insults at him. When Abrokwa was brought into court for arraignment, he addressed Judge Wanda Licitra by saying, “F___ you, b____.” The judge ordered him to be released on a personal recognizance bond, despite the wishes of prosecutors. Shortly after that, prosecutors took a different tack. Abrokwa was brought back in and arraigned on different charges, including committing a hate crime stemming from his earlier spitting incident. However, he was ordered freed, yet again. The reason? None of the charges appear on the list of bail-eligible offenses that were put into place when bail reform laws took effect in 2019. Janno Lieber, Executive Director of the Metropolitan Transit, said, “I'm not a criminal justice expert but I don’t understand how someone who commits this kind of assault – which was violent, horribly victimizing a transit rider – can just walk free even when he has four other open cases against him, including two other transit assaults and a hate crime charge." As egregious as this particular case is, it is only one of many related to bail reform since new laws began to sweep the nation. There have been numerous accounts of individuals charged with violent crimes, including first-degree murder, after they have been set free because of revised bail reform policies. Ken W. Good, a noted bail attorney and a board member of the Professional Bondsmen of Texas, is available to address this issue. Ken has worked closely with lawmakers and other individuals on bail matters. He can offer his perspective on the impact that criminal justice and bail reform have had on public safety. About Ken W. Good Good graduated from Hardin Simmons University in 1982 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree. He received a Master of Education Degree in 1986 from Tarleton State University, a part of the Texas A&M System. In 1989, he received his law degree from Texas Tech School of Law, where he was a member of the Texas Tech Law Review. Mr. Good has argued cases before the Supreme Court of Texas and the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals, along with numerous courts of appeals, including the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. He is the author of "Good’s on Bail," a practice guide created for bail industry professionals. In addition, he has written numerous articles on the subject of bail reform, including, “What Successful Bail Reform Looks Like.” Mr. Good is married and has two daughters.
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