ST. CHARLES, Ill. — It’s rare for a sheriff to push for the release of a detainee, but that’s what’s happening in Kane County.
Sheriff Ron Hain is championing the case of a repeat-offender and former drug addict who has taken steps to turn his life around while behind bars.
John Fowler, 44, has been in Kane County Jail since December 2017. He is awaiting trial on charges he sold a total of three grams to an undercover informant.
A judge set Fowler’s bail at $500,000. To be released, Fowler would have to pay 10%, or $50,000.
A key reason for the high amount was Fowler’s criminal history. He’s served time for a bank robbery, another robbery and drug possession.
Hain would like to see Fowler’s bail lowered, noting the detainee has undergone drug counseling and made plans to open a barbershop upon release.
“He has shown what a productive human being he can be,” Hain said. “And what a contribution to society he can be.”
In Cook County, there’s a been a push to set lower bonds for non-violent offenders such as Fowler, but there hasn’t been the same outcry in Kane County.
Hain would like to see that change – in some cases.
“We can’t look at all our inmates with a broad sweeping brush,” he says.
Fowler plans to ask the judge for a lower bond at his next court appearance.
No trial date has been set. If convicted, he faces a minimum of six years in prison.
The Kane County state’s attorney’s office declined to comment.