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Columbia, SC (WLTX) -- This year's early summer saw a number of people charged with violent criminal acts making bond, only to get out of jail and be charged in connection with another crime.

Months ago a panel was formed to see what could be done about the problem.

For months, Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin has had a special panel looking at violent crime and bond reform.

Now, a report from the panel is final, and former State Law Enforcement Division Chief Robert Stewart chaired the panel, using research to back their findings.

"There's been a lot of research and study done over the last several years on how to appropriately give information to judges to set bond," Stewart said.

The panel's final recommendations were made to Columbia City Council Tuesday, and include pre-trial "risk assessments," a system that would ensure Columbia Police officers are at each bond hearing to help the bond setting process.

That is an aspect Interim CPD Chief Ruben Santiago said his force is open to.

"We're still looking at how that's going to work internally," Santiago said. "What we're doing now is taking the report, digesting it, seeing how we can fit."

Stewart said one obstacle to that recommendation may be funding.

"Law enforcement, many places, has been so strapped for manpower," Stewart said. "Apparently this is something that just has not got a lot of attention."

Santiago said he understood that CPD is "trying to operate within budgetary restraints."

Mayor Benjamin said he is working with lawmakers to make sure other issues in the report are addressed, including steeper penalties for those who commit crimes while on bond.

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