Missouri Supreme Court prohibits jail time for jail debts

Critics
Missouri Supreme Court prohibits jail time for jail debts
Copyright 2019 by KOAMNewsNow KOAM. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

The Missouri Supreme Court says local courts can’t throw people back in jail for not paying previous jail debts.

Prior to the ruling, indigent inmates who couldn’t pay the cost — commonly called board bills — could be returned to prison, adding to their debts. Critics, including Republican Attorney General Eric Schmitt and the ACLU of Missouri, had argued the policy led to modern-day debtors’ prisons.

The Missouri Supreme Court judges on Tuesday ruled unanimously against local courts helping to recoup those costs with methods including jail time.

The case stems from two Missouri men who fell behind on paying the cost of their own imprisonment in county jail. Those charges are commonly referred to as board bills.

Both men had to return to court repeatedly regarding their bills. One was jailed for not paying.

Comments

comments