Going from 0 - 65 in 65 years: How the Landscape of Pretrial Justice Reform is Changing in America


Monday, August 19, 2019
4:15 PM - 5:15 PM
Session Type: Workshop

The pretrial justice process is currently a hot topic for community activists and politicians across the country. Many jails have seen a fundamental switch over the past 60 years from housing those convicted of a crime to housing those only accused, including many who pose a very low risk in terms of both public safety and likelihood of failing to appear for an upcoming court date. The current process usually places far too much focus on a person’s financial status and ability to pay when making determinations on who stays in custody and who gets to be released. This landscape is changing in numerous different jurisdictions across the country. The presenters will discuss these changes, including information on how such jurisdictions are providing appropriate alternatives to incarceration for those awaiting disposition of their cases. We will also discuss relevant litigation, policy changes, pushback received, and the similarities and differences in supervising pretrial and probation populations.


Aaron Johnson
Director of Personal Bonds and Collections, Santa Clara County Office of Pretrial Services

Aaron Johnson is the current Director of Pretrial Services in Santa Clara County and has worked in different State and County agencies since 1995. Mr. Johnson received his Bachelor's of Science Degree in Sociology with an emphasis on Crime and Delinquent Studies from the University of Kansas and his Master's Degree in Business Administration from MidAmerica Nazarene University. Prior to his arrival to Santa Clara County, Mr. Johnson developed the first Pretrial Services Agency in 2010 for Johnson County, Kansas, and contributed to the development of Johnson County's risk assessment tool and Pretrial Release and Detention Guidelines. Mr. Johnson is a member of the National Association of Pretrial Services Agencies (NAPSA) education committee and continues to advocate for pretrial reform