EUGENE, Ore. – An Oregon lawmaker is speaking out on a change in Oregon circuit courts that means inmates will no longer be shackled unless a judge grants permission.
The change comes after the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled shackles imply guilt.
State Sen. James Manning, a retired law enforcement officer, said perception plays a big role in the courtroom.
“What happens when a person is found to be not guilty and they've experienced that?” Sen. Manning said. “What type of trauma do they live with? Not only that, once it's all out in the newspaper, how does that negatively impact their lives trying to move forward?”
However, Sen. Manning said the security in court is important as well.
Under the new rules, the defendant can be shackled if a judge determines that person to be a danger or at risk to escape. In the past, some people have gotten hurt or even killed in a courtroom.
The policy went into effect this fall.