Katy Victim Advocate wants residents to act ahead of special session to address violent release from bonds
NEWS FROM KATY MAGAZINE
July 6, 2021
By Natalie Cook Clark
Homicide rates in Houston have risen 35% over the past year, a surprising fact Katy Victims Advocate says should drive people crazy and contact their state officials and senators ahead of Gov. Abbott’s special session .
Bill to help bail reform awaits extraordinary session
Texas, particularly Harris County in Katy, is experiencing a surety reform crisis that Gov. Greg Abbott has made a priority this legislative session. House Bill 20 was drafted to address this issue, but it was not passed when House Democrats came out to try not to pass a voting restrictions bill. In the process, some bills, such as HB 20 and questions that should have gone through the legislative session did not.
“The system is down,” says Andy Kahan, director of victim services and advocacy for Crime Stoppers Houston. “I have never seen such a serious situation.
Special session this week and how you can help
“Now is the time to make our city and county safer with bond reform legislation,” Kahan said. “I ask for your help.”
The special session is due to start this Thursday, July 8. Now is the time for the residents of Katy to make their voices heard.
Kahan asks people to sign their document in support of bills that would help end the current bail crisis. Access the document to view it (and sign it) here.
Surprising facts should create outrage
85 of the 120 victims were killed in 2020 and 2021 by defendants released on multiple bail.
A PR surety allows an accused to be released from prison without having to pay money for his surety. Essentially, they are released on a promise to appear at their next court date.
“The lack of outrage is what I cannot understand. When you have a one-year-old girl killed by a man in connection with public relations and the leaders of that community say nothing, ”says Kahan. “I do not understand.”
Katy’s recent nail salon shooter on Bond
Katy has seen the effect on several occasions. Currently, one of the suspects involved in the Katy Nail Salon shooting last month is on such a link.
“A public relations obligation is essentially a free prison release card,” Kahan explains. “There is no common sense that defies logic.”
On July 17, Katy’s mother was shot dead in her apartment in Barker Cypress. Kimberly Robinson, 28, was in bed with her 4-year-old daughter when her ex-boyfriend, Cedgadrick Ardarius shot her.
Her 4-year-old daughter was also shot but recovered. Ardarius was on several personal engagement, or public relations obligations, including a previous assault on Robinson. He was charged with capital murder for the murder of Robinson.
Kahan has no objection to anyone getting bail. “I object to people coming out with weak ties with a history of violence, murder and domestic violence,” Kahan explains.
Bail reform a priority in extraordinary session
Gov. Abbott has already announced a special session to address his priority of addressing the Texas surety reform issue. The session will begin this Thursday, July 8. Gov. Abbott said the priority items would be elections and bail reform.
“We hope House Bill 20 passes, and that will be a priority during the special session,” said Andy Kahan, director of victim services and advocacy for Houston Crime Stoppers.
Kahan will be at the special session and will bring with him more people and families who have been affected by this issue.
Rising Crime Rate in Houston and Harris County
The crime rate is skyrocketing. According to Kahan, the homicide rate in Houston increased 35% from 2020 to 2021. To put it into perspective; Chicago is up 5%, New York 17% and Los Angeles 23%.
“It’s time to check the reality and stop pretending that bond reform doesn’t play a big role in increasing our crime rates,” Kahan said.
Katy’s Residents Can Help
Residents of Katy can make a difference by writing and / or calling their Senators and House Representatives.
House Bill 20 will eliminate public relations obligations for defendants accused of violent crimes such as murder and human trafficking.
This is a story Katy Magazine continues to cover and has been updated from a previous one. history which took place on June 16.
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