Officials in two Tennessee counties, Shelby and Hamilton, use a bail calculation tool for criminal defendants that is also used in Waukesha, Wisconsin.

Waukesha is where suspect Darrell Brooks Jr. faces homicide charges for using his car to kill six people at a recent holiday gathering. Prosecutors handling a previous case of physical abuse and vehicular assault involving Brooks asked a court to set a bail bond for the defendant at a mere $1,000. Court officials agreed.

Far-left philanthropist John Arnold created this Public Safety Assessment (PSA) bail calculator.

Arnold’s website, Advancing Pretrial Policy & Research, said Shelby and Hamilton counties implemented Arnold’s tool in 2019.

This PSA, Arnold’s website went on, predicts a suspect’s failure to appear in court pretrial, a new criminal arrest while on pretrial release, and a new violent criminal arrest while on pretrial release. Arnold’s website said these factors deliver “improved outcomes.”

24/7 Wall Street last week listed what it said were America’s 50 most dangerous cities.

Chattanooga, in Hamilton County, ranked as the nation’s 43rd most dangerous city.

Memphis, in Shelby County, ranked as the nation’s most dangerous city overall.

Arnold’s website said officials in Arizona, Kentucky, New Jersey, and Utah also use his PSA.

Arnold recently published a column on his website that said “partisan actors and analysts” were trying to capitalize on the Waukesha tragedy.

“Partisan actors and analysts turned a moment of mourning into a megaphone for their own agenda, highlighting the fact that the man behind the wheel — who is now facing at least six homicide charges — had recently been freed on a $1,000 bond for prior offenses. This, they say, should spark a backlash to bail reform,” according to the column.

“In reality, it just shows the depths to which the nationwide for-profit cash bail machine will stoop to defend a broken, unsafe system. The bloodshed was another sad example of the human toll of substituting money for a measure of public safety. In fact, the driver’s previous risk assessment had flagged a potential need for preventative detention. But, instead, a money bail was set.”

The column went on to say that “a system that allows the dangerous yet wealthy to buy their freedom pretrial is hardly tough on crime.”

“It is tough on the poor and working class who get stuck behind bars simply because they can’t write a check. It is tough on the families and businesses who lose loved ones and employees to unnecessary wealth-based detentions,” the column said.

“And it is tough on the taxpayers who have to pay for expensive, overcrowded jails. But the defenders of the cash bail status quo just don’t seem to care.”

In 2018, Investor’s Business Daily profiled Arnold and his wife Laura and described them as “mini-George Soroses.”

“Flying way under the radar, the Arnolds have spread an incredible amount of wealth over the past decade to push domestic public policy to the left,” according to the website.

“In fact, since January 2011, their foundation has disbursed more than $1 billion to advance special-interest causes.”

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Chris Butler is an investigative journalist at The Tennessee Star. Follow Chris on Facebook. Email tips to [email protected]
Photo “John Arnold” by Arnold Ventures. Background Photo “Shelby County Courthouse” by Thomas R Machnitzki. CC BY 3.0.