Attorney balance advocate antique beautiful blindfold
Share on Facebook
Share on Twitter
Share on LinkedIn

The Safety, Accountability, Fairness, and Equity-Today Act, commonly known as the SAFE-T Act, is an Illinois statute enacted in 2021 that reforms the criminal justice system. It represents a shift in the approach to policing, pretrial detention, bail, sentencing, and corrections. The law was previously addressed in this blog. 

After dozens of state’s attorneys and sheriffs filed lawsuits challenging the law’s constitutionality, Kankakee County Judge Thomas Cunnington found the elimination of cash bail to be unconstitutional. But the Illinois Supreme Court disagreed. In its July 18, 2023 ruling, the Court found Judge Cunnington “ignored the plain language of the constitution,” pointing out that the state constitution “does not include the term ‘monetary’” when it says nearly all criminal defendants must be bailable by “sufficient sureties.” In reversing, the Supreme Court reasoned that “‘Sufficient sureties’ is not limited to sufficient monetary sureties.” Per the Supreme Court’s ruling, cash bail in Illinois will be formally retired on September 18, 2023. Reach out to us today to learn more.

About the Author
Christopher Keleher clerked for the Hon. William J. Bauer of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit.  This unique opportunity provided Mr. Keleher with an invaluable understanding of the inner workings of an appellate court.  He saw what persuades judges and what does not, and utilizes this knowledge every time he writes an appellate brief. The Keleher Appellate Law Group handles all phases of appellate litigation in federal and state courts across the country. Read more here.