Gov. Abbott’s order bars personal bonds or early release to those who had been previously convicted of a crime involving physical violence or the threat of violence, and those currently charged with such a crime.
Abbott said at a news conference yesterday that “releasing dangerous criminals makes the state even less safe… and slows our ability to respond to the disaster caused by COVID-19.”
The announcement comes as Harris County Judge Lina Hildalgo was working to release hundreds of inmates.
Abbott said “I’ve heard from law enforcement officials as well as citizens alike who’ve raised concerns about releases that have already taken place or anticipated releases that could take place.We want to reduce and contain COVID-19 in jails and in prisons for the benefit of both the inmates and the law enforcement officers of those facilities.”
Joe Gamaldi with the Houston Police Officers’ Union thanked the Governor for the order.Gamaldi tweeted “thanks…for your leadership in preventing release of thousands of violent felons onto Houston streets. Our officers have their hands full dealing w/ #Covid_19 pandemic and don’t need added duty of babysitting felons who should be behind bars”. read more