Supreme Court Changes Jail Credit Rules

Topeka, KS – The Kansas Supreme Court held that an inmate must receive credit for all time spend in jail awaiting the conclusion of his case, overruling 45 years of precedent. In State v. Hopkins, No. 124,851 (Kan. Oct. 20, 2023), Mark Hopkins II spent 572 days in jail awaiting trial and sentencing for a crime committed in 2020, but the lower court refused to grant Hopkins credit for much of that time because Hopkins had other pending criminal cases.

On appeal, the Justices held that K.S.A. 2022 Supp. 21-6615(a) does not limit jail credit to time spend “solely” in custody for the charge for which the defendant is being sentenced. In sweeping away the impracticable and confusing prior rule, the Court wrote, “applying our updated rule is a much easier endeavor; we simply conclude that because Hopkins spent 572 days in jail while his case was pending, Hopkins must be awarded 572 days in jail time credit against his [prison sentence].”

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