CMPD chief concerned about low bonds for violent criminals set by magistrates

CHARLOTTE — Police chiefs from around North Carolina brought their concerns over gun violence to Gov. Roy Cooper and Attorney General Josh Stein.

Chiefs touched on several topics at a meeting in Raleigh on Monday that included, struggles with recruitment and retention and the mental aspects of their jobs.

Cooper and Stein also reiterated the need for stricter gun laws.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department Chief Johnny Jennings also spoke about bail reform and concerns surrounding low bond for criminals.

Jennings said magistrates have too much discretion, which needs to change.

“To change violent crime in our communities we have to hold these criminals accountable for their actions,” he said in a tweet after the meeting.

Channel 9 spoke with Daniel Redford, president of the Fraternal Order of Police, about the chief’s efforts.

“I really think that Chief Jennings going to Raleigh and taking the steps that he has to address, this low-bond issues, shows really shows you just how much of an issue it is here in Mecklenburg County,” Redford said.

The FOP has been outspoken about the issue of low bonds and repeat offenders being released from jail.

“To say that officers are frustrated is a gross understatement, to be honest,” Redford said.

Jennings also authored an op-ed published on The Charlotte Observer’s website Tuesday about the topic.

“Our people work relentlessly to take violent criminals like this off the street, only for them to get right back out and re-offend,” Jennings wrote.

The police chief highlighted several cases, including a shooting that happened in late June.

Toddrick McFadden is accused of shooting a police officer who was responding to a call at the Blind Pig in Plaza Midwood.

The suspect’s bond was initially $170,000.

The chief released an internal video to the police department addressing the issue of the low bond.

A magistrate later raised the amount to $520,000.

Channel 9 reached out to court officials and they said they will send a response.

(Watch below: CMPD officer shot in leg in NoDa, police say)