New Bail Reform Law Faces Criticism in Hudson Valley
(excerpt from Hudson Valley Post - Oct 4 2019)
Some say the safety of Hudson Valley residents is being put in danger with a new bail law that will keep many people out of jail.
On Thursday, Orange County District Attorney David Hoovler issued a statement criticizing upcoming changes in the law of bail in New York State.
The changes will take effect on Jan. 1, 2020. The changes were passed on April 1, 2019, as part of the State’s budget process, with virtually no input from prosecutors, police, or the courts; with almost no consideration of the effect of the changes on public safety; and with no funding to enable the changes to work properly, according to Orange County District Attorney's office.
Effective in January, defendants charged with, among other things, residential burglary, almost all drug sale and possession offenses, some homicides, assaults resulting from drunk driving collisions, many weapons offenses, grand larceny, bribery involving public officials, and many charges involving child pornography, among other charges, will all be released from custody, without the courts even being able to consider bail, officials say.
A defendant’s release will be based only on the charge, not the defendant’s previous criminal record, his previous record of making court appearances, or his likelihood of committing further crimes while out of custody, according to Orange County District Attorney's office.
For example, according to the to Orange County District Attorney's office, the SUV driver who fled a fatal accident this week in Orange County would have been released from state custody, without the possibility of bail being set, despite the seriousness of the crime and despite the defendant’s ties to a foreign country.