Are you anxious about 2020 because of NY Bail Reform? How will law-abiding citizens be safe in this environment?

The NYS Senate, Assembly, and our Governor passed the NY Bail Reform law, and like it or not, it goes into effect on January 1st, 2020. NYS is eliminating cash bail and pretrial detention for an estimated 90 percent of arrests for certain crimesThe offenders will be given an appearance ticket to return for their day in court. No, it doesn't matter if they have a lengthy criminal history or prior convictions, they will be released on their signature. The list of 'mandatory release crimes' is insane!

Oneida City Police Benevolent Association published a list from the District Attorneys Association of the State of New York. The list is shocking, and it does NOT show all of the laws that will be affected:

  • Assault in the third degree
  • Aggravated vehicular assault
  • Aggravated assault upon a person less than eleven years old
  • Criminally negligent homicide
  • Aggravated vehicular homicide
  • Manslaughter in the second degree
  • Unlawful imprisonment in the first degree
  • Coercion in the first degree
  • Arson in the third and fourth degree
  • Grand larceny in the first degree
  • Criminal possession of a weapon on school grounds or criminal possession of a firearm
  • Criminal possession of a controlled substance in the first and second degree
  • Criminal sale of a controlled substance in the first and second degree
  • Criminal sale of a controlled substance in or near school grounds
  • Specified felony drug offenses involving the use of children, including the use of a child to commit a controlled substance offense and criminal sale of a controlled substance to a child
  • Criminal solicitation in the first degree and criminal facilitation in the first degree
  • Money laundering in support of terrorism in the third and fourth degree
  • Making a terroristic threat
  • Patronizing a person for prostitution in a school zone
  • Promoting an obscene sexual performance by a child
  • Possessing an obscene sexual performance by a child
  • Promoting a sexual performance by a child
  • Failure to register as a sex offender
  • Obstructing governmental administration in the first and second degree
  • Obstructing governmental administration by means of a self-defense spray device
  • Bribery in the first degree
  • Bribe giving for public office
  • Bribe receiving in the first degree
  • Promoting prison contraband in the first and second degree
  • Resisting arrest
  • Hindering prosecution
  • Tampering with a juror and tampering with physical evidence
  • Aggravated harassment in the first degree
  • Directing a laser at an aircraft in the first degree
  • Criminal possession of a weapon in the fourth degree
  • Criminal sale of a firearm to a minor
  • Enterprise corruption and money laundering in the first degree
  • Aggravated cruelty to animals, overdriving, torturing and injuring animals
  • Failure to provide proper sustenance
  • Animal fighting

Oneida City Police Benevolent Association says there is a lot of misinformation out there and released a myth and fact sheet in an attempt to educate the public

❌Myth: The law only applies to low level and non-violent crimes.
✅Fact: The law covers serious & violent crimes including robbery, burglary, strangulation, drug dealing, some assaults and even criminally negligent homicide.

❌Myth: The law only protects first time offenders.
✅Fact: It applies to ALL including someone with a lengthy criminal history of dozens of prior convictions.

❌Myth: If someone is dangerous they will be held with no bail.
✅Fact: Unlike in other states, the NY law does not speak to this. It does not make an exception if the individual poses a threat to society or themselves.

❌Myth: A judge still has discretion.
✅Fact: This law takes away almost all of the judge’s discretion. Additionally, in many cases the accused won’t even be arrested to see a judge. They will receive an appearance ticket from police and continue on their way until their court date.

❌ Myth: Witnesses will continue to be protected until discovery process right before trial.
✅ Fact: The law requires that witness name and contact information be turned over to the defendant within 15 days of a defendant’s arrest.

❌Myth: This is the only way to make criminal justice system fair
✅Fact: A blanket policy that releases 90% of accused population back onto our streets is not the answer. We must ensure that everyone receives their constitutionally protected right to a SPEEDY trial and can do so by investing in our court system to ensure cases are heard swiftly. Also, the law should consider criminal history AND if individual poses a threat to public safety

If this is upsetting to you, then contact your Senator, Assembly-person and the Governor's office to voice your concerns.