The issue of private bail money that sends bail money to suspects awaiting trial is back in the spotlight. This time, Whitman’s mother, accused of murdering her two-year-old daughter, was the focus of attention.
On August 19, Shanikwa Leonard pleaded not guilty to the manslaughter charge for the death of her two-year-old daughter, Leric Farrell, in December.
The bail is set at $ 25,000.
An organization called the National Council of Women Prisoners and Ex-Prisoners issued the $ 25,000 bail, and Leonard was released.
But now, Leonard is back behind bars.
Prosecutors allege that Leonard, over the weekend, violated her release terms by threatening to “slaughter” her neighbors and allege that Leonard cut off her surveillance device, which was found in Roxbury.
This week, a judge revoked Leonard’s bail.
Plymouth County DA Timothy Cruz targets the group that has paid Leonard’s bail.
“Quite frankly, I would like to know what their criteria are for someone accused of a very serious crime, serious criminal records, being brought back into our community,” Cruz said. “We have a responsibility, I have a responsibility towards our society. I also bear responsibility for a two-year-old girl who was brutally murdered six months ago.”
Andrea James is the founder of the National Council of Women Prisoners and Formers. In a phone conversation, she refused to speak on the Leonard case, saying it was an open legal matter.
But she says helping women like Leonard is in line with her group’s work to end prison women and girls.
We are an organization working to end the incarceration of women and girls. “We are not turning our backs on women who are part of our membership and who need support.” That was a decision that was made and we made it, James said. We are standing next to him. We hope, sir, that this leads us to a place where we can move beyond thinking that this process that is currently taking place will change anything. “
The National Council is trying to get $ 25,000 that was put forth for Leonard’s release.
The group is expected to argue that Leonard has turned in and that the bail should be returned to the group.
But Cruz is expected to argue that Leonard violated the terms of her release, and that the $ 25,000 bail published by the Special Group should be lost to help other crime victims.
The two sides are expected to discuss their case in court soon.