Calls for Changes to NY’s Bail Reform Law Grow Louder

News and Resources

Well-dressed man at podium speaks against bail reform, while onlookers hold signs reading 'what about the victims?'

Pretty much the minute the clock struck midnight on December 31st and the New Year began horror stories have been filtering out of the great state of New York. Not traffic horror stories or horror stories about the price of apartments in the East Village. Horror stories related to the state’s newly enacted bail reform legislation. As predicted by just about everyone with a lick of common sense releasing suspected criminals immediately without assigning even minimal bail has caused a spike in recidivism, a spike in assaults, burglaries, and car thefts and emotional calls to undo the madness before it's too late for the Empire State.

Broad Based Calls for Change

You may think these calls for sanity are coming from some bondsman who suddenly finds himself with little to do. But you’d be wrong. They’re coming from prosecutors, law enforcement, average citizens who suddenly find themselves under assault and politicians from both sides of the political aisle. In other words, calls to enact swift and dramatic changes to New York's bail reform legislation are coming from the type of broad-based coalition bail reformers could never muster when they tried to fool residents of Jefferson County, Arapahoe County, and Denver County into adopting bail reform in Colorado.

Politics Make Strange Bedfellows

As more and more horror stories have made it to the front page the public has become increasingly vocal regarding their opposition to bail reform. This rising tide of support for change has shaken even formerly staunch supporters of the reform movement like New York City Mayor Bill de Basio. It was the mayor, working closely with Governor Cuomo, who helped shepherd bail reform through the political maze that is New York politics. At one point he himself dismissed opponents of bail reform as “fear mongers”. Today, however, de Basio is singing a very different tune.

Litany of Bail Bonds Reform Failure

So what was it that set a fire under the mayor and caused him to change course so dramatically less than a month after bail reform officially went into effect?

Maybe it was the case of Paul Barbaritano of Albany who was released without bail after being accused of suffocating and stabbing to death 29-year-old mother Nicole Jennings. Prosecutors argued in vain that he represented a clear and present danger but the judge in the case released him anyway, claiming his hands were tied by the new bail reform legislation.

Or maybe it was the case of Westbury resident Gerard Conway. Conway vandalized and burglarized 4 different stores in Westbury, was arrested and then immediately released without bail. Hours later he was back at it, breaking into another Westbury business and stealing the cash registers.

Or maybe the mayor changed his mind after hearing about the case of Jonathan Martin who was arrested after breaking into a suburban New York home in the middle of the night and demanding money from a terrified teenager. The teenager escaped and called the police and Martin was arrested. But, because New York is now a kinder, gentler place for dangerous criminals, he was immediately released. His response to being released? He returned to the police station several hours later and smashed the window on the front door.

We think the breaking point for Bill came when he was faced with a group of angry Jewish residents in Brooklyn last week. They demanded to know why a woman who had assaulted Orthodox Jewish women on two occasions just days apart was released from custody without bail. The mayor emerged from that meeting having finally had enough and called for change.

"Bail reform needs to be amended" he said, leaving no doubt about his new stance. "I believe this strongly". It was a startling about-face for someone who had previously brushed off suggestions that anything could go wrong with bail reform the way it had passed the legislature. And it marked a turning point in the several years’ long debate in New York about the need and potential shape of bail reform. But de Blasio is not the only politician calling for change.

Bi-Partisan Support for Revisiting Bail Reform

Glenville, NY state Senator Jim Tedisco took note of de Blasio’s change of heart and declared the state legislature should do what the mayor suggests and revisit bail bonding reform. This marked a rare occasion of bipartisan agreement in a deeply divided political climate. Both the republican Tedisco and the Democrat de Blasio called for judges to be given greater leeway in deciding who is detained and who is released.

The question now is whether Governor Andrew Cuomo will follow through on his own promise to revisit the law. In the wake of overwhelming evidence that bail reform wasn’t working as intended the governor made some off the cuff remarks in January that suggested he was open to change. He called bail reform “a work in progress” and said certain aspects of the current law needed to be changed. But he was short on specifics and has been largely silent on the matter for the past couple of weeks.

Perhaps de Blasio’s change of heart will give Cuomo the political cover he needs to pull an about-face of his own. Right now the jury is still out. But as Tedisco reminded voters "If this bail reform law is not fixed… it's going to be 365 days of carnage on our streets…"

Next Post Previous Post

Search The Site

Speak With the Experts

Feel free to browse our bail bonds resources here or use the search above to see if we've written about the topic yet.

For the fastest response, please give us a call at (303) 623-0399 and a member of our team will be able to quickly and accurately provide an answer to any Colorado bail bond-related question you may have.

Recent Articles

Sunday, March 03, 2024 Mike Tayler
Anytime you bail out a friend or loved one you’re taking a chance. If the accused heads for the hills after being released and is never heard from again you are going to lose and lose big. If you paid cash instead of using a bondsman that cash will be forfeited. If you posted a property bond the court may foreclose on your house and sell it to get the bail amount, and if you enlisted the help of a bail bonds agent they are going to come knockin...
Saturday, November 19, 2022
When a person has been arrested there’s a lot going through their mind and it can sometimes be difficult to take a step back, take a breath and make sound decisions. One mistake a lot of people who have been arrested in Denver County, Golden, and elsewhere in Colorado make is deciding to act as their own bail bond agent by paying their own bail. Certainly, if they have the means it’s entirely legal for them to do so, but just because you can...
Sunday, March 03, 2024
Although those in favor of eliminating the centuries-old bail bonds system suffered a much deserved setback last year in the Colorado state senate, that hasn’t stopped them from trying to saddle taxpayers with their backward, short-sighted ideas. In fact, as you read this lobbyists are working the corridors of power in Denver trying to get legislators behind new efforts to eliminate cash bail. In its stead they propose using a deeply flawed com...

Syndicate via Atom & RSS

Connect With Us

Facebook
Google
Twitter

Contact Info

Tayler Made Bail Bonding is available 24 hours a day and 7 days a week.

(303) 623-0399
email@taylermadebailbonding.com
3595 South Teller Street
Suite 300A
Lakewood, CO 80235
@TaylerMadeBail