Will Bail Reform Actually Happen in New York?
Bail reform? More criminals on the streets? I’ve heard so many people talking about bail reform and what’s going to happen come January.
In case you haven’t heard, laws were passed earlier in the year which impact those being held after arrest. With the new laws, people arrested for things like non-violent crimes and certain misdemeanors have to be released without bail, until their trial. I mean, that’s basically a quick summary.
On one hand, the laws aim to help people who cant afford bail go back to their lives and work and such until trial according to WNYT. On the other hand, a lot of crimes that I feel like I would consider concerning are lumped into this category of release.
I’ve spent a lot of time actually talking to Capital Region cops and public service workers about this. Some have spoken out against it. But I have to say of all the people I’ve talked to, none are supportive of the way the law stands. Like WNYT reports, people accused of fairly “scary” crimes like stalking, robbery, and assault would apparently be included in this mandatory release without bail.
Now my question is- if someone is committing a robbery or assaulting someone, do we really think they're also living with a functioning work life (what the law is aimed at) or will even show up at court if they are guilty?? Sure a warrant can be issued for their arrest, but that’s even more resources used and more officers spread thin in already understaffed police departments (for example Troy, which has a number of openings).
WNYT reports that lawmakers are working to fight the bail reform before it hits. New legislation has been introduced to at least give judges discretion on who can be held or not. You can read all about it here, but I want to know- what are your thoughts on bail reform?