PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner is calling out those who set bail in the city after an attempted murder arrest. The call for change is in response to the arrest of a Philadelphia man accused of shooting his ex-girlfriend in the Northeast.
The victim is no longer in critical condition. She was just released from the hospital over the weekend.READ MORE: Caught On Camera: Fire Rips Through Vacant Bar In Penns Grove, New Jersey
Those who know her are happy her shooter is finally in jail.
“It was scary,” a neighbor said.
Neighbors remember hearing the horrifying pops of gunfire that rocked this Somerton neighborhood on the 800 block of Welton Street late last month when a 29-year-old woman was shot three times outside her home and left for dead.
“Early in the morning. It was a couple shots, like bah, bah,” a neighbor said.
“Then you hear a woman screaming, crying for help,” said another.
Police have now identified the gunman as 33-year-old James White. Authorities say after the shooting White drove off, but he was found and arrested on Friday.
“I’m happy to report that the magistrate saw fit to hold him without bail,” Philadelphia Assistant District Attorney Chesley Lightsey said.READ MORE: 'It's Just Too Much.' Neighbors Remember 51-Year-Old Gunned Down In Poplar
That means White will remain in jail until trial.
But officials say at the time of the shooting, White should have been in jail.
On top of dozens of prior arrests, White was accused of pistol-whipping his ex-girlfriend and threatening her life weeks before on Oct. 1.
“He was arrested for that. Our office requested $990,000 of bail, $350,000 of bail was set. Mr. White promptly made that bail,” Lightsey said.
“It’s not judges who set the first bail,” Krasner said.
Krasner says city bail commissioners often set bail, adding they’re appointed to their positions, sometimes with little or no prior legal experience.
“Bail commissioners, in my opinion, should not be handling shootings, homicides, first-degree felony rapes,” Krasner said.
Krasner adds the most serious cases should have a scheduled hearing in front of an elected municipal court judge so that if people don’t like how cases are being handled they can be voted out.MORE NEWS: Philadelphia Weather: Sunday System Brings First Chance Of Snowflakes For Parts Of Region
White has dozens of prior arrests, mostly related to drug offenses. His preliminary hearing is set for next month.