As a lifelong NYC resident, I can say the comissioner is right. Cash bail in NY was imperfect and many poor people suffered years in jail literally because they couldn’t pay bail that was only a few thousand or even only a few hundred dollars. Sometimes, innocent people pled guilty because they could not afford bail or a defense attorney and just wanted to get out of jail. Change was without question needed.
That being said, the bail reform passed by the NY State government last year was way over the top and radical. Firstly, it removes discretion from judges. There are very dangerous people and judges know they are dangerous, but must release them. Moreover, many “misdemeanors” and “non-violent” felonies, are actually very bad. I woun’t list specifi crimes, just look at the list of offenses. Many conservatives, centists, and even moderate liberals agree that bail reform was needed but that this specific reform went way too far. NYC crime is up and many people feel less safe. The bail reform was rushed. Other laws governing victims’ rights and DA rules were also changed and those changes to will have a negative impact on our state and makes us less safe.I could go on with more specific reasons and cases, but I don’t want to make this response too long. For more information, read the NY Post.
It is sad beacue reform was needed, but these specific reforms were dangerous. Many people are being hurt as a result.