Amid the continued debate over whether or not to rollback points of 2019 reforms to the state’s money bail laws, officers from Governor Kathy Hochul’s administration shared information on Monday exhibiting there’s been little distinction within the variety of folks rearrested pretrial from earlier than the modifications had been handed to a few years after implementation.
However Republican lawmakers in each the state Senate and Meeting are doubtful in regards to the information’s accuracy.
Officers from the state Division of Prison Justice Companies (DCJS) highlighted the findings throughout a marathon multi-hour hour joint state Senate and Meeting oversight listening to to research data collected on the impact of the 2019 criminal justice reforms by DCJS and the state Workplace of Court docket Administration (OCA). State lawmakers additionally heard testimony from officers with the OCA and with New York Metropolis Mayor Eric Adams’ administration.
The listening to took place as Hochul is set to unveil her government price range for the approaching fiscal 12 months on Wednesday and she or he’s in search of to make additional modifications to the state’s pretrial detention laws.
Of their opening statements, the Codes Committee chairs of every respective chamber, state Senator Jamal Bailey (D-Bronx) and Meeting Member Jeffrey Dinowitz (D-Bronx), each made clear the listening to’s objective was to higher perceive the information collected on the implementation of current legal justice reforms, however to not debate the worth of the modifications themselves.
“For the past couple of years, we’ve had many conversations around the newly available criminal justice statistics,” Dinowitz stated. “We’ve seen people point to the same sets of numbers and draw completely different conclusions. So we’re here today to talk about all of the criminal justice data that we have available to us. And it’s a lot. But as important, if not more importantly, we’re here today to talk about the context, we need to understand what these numbers mean. And what they don’t mean.”
The 2019 pretrial detention modifications, which eradicated money bail for many misdemeanors and nonviolent felonies, has been some extent of competition since they had been carried out in early 2020, with many centrists and Republicans blaming them for the rise in crime New York skilled in the course of the pandemic. Final 12 months, Hochul pushed a number of rollbacks to the bail laws by way of the state price range course of to present judges extra discretion when it involves repeat offenders, crimes involving weapons and people who violate orders of safety.
State Senator Brad Hoylman-Sigal (D-Manhattan), chair of the state Senate Judiciary Committee, echoed that the listening to aimed to look previous newspaper headlines drawing consideration to a number of high-profile crimes, typically blaming them on bail reform, and dig into the numbers.
“We’ve been bombarded with media campaigns, fear mongering, asking ‘would you support changes to the law?’ And our response has always been: ‘show us the data,’ Hoylman-Sigal said. “We’re going to try to look behind the headlines and get the real data on the record.”
One of many topline findings introduced by DCJS Commissioner Rossana Rosado and Govt Deputy Commissioner Joseph Popcun was that statewide index crime has decreased 24% between 2012 and 2021. However it rebounded final 12 months, rising 29% of the primary three quarters of 2022.
Throughout his line of questioning to Rosado and Popcun, Dinowitz pointed to information exhibiting that, in New York Metropolis, the variety of offenders rearrested after being launched pretrial barely elevated between the durations earlier than and after the bail laws had been modified.
General, the proportion of offenders who had been rearrested after being launched pretrial inside 180 days of their arraignment, throughout the town’s legal court docket system, elevated from 19% in 2019 to 22% in 2020 — in line with the DCJS report. However then that quantity went again down to twenty% in the course of the first three quarters of 2021.
He additionally famous that those that had been rearrested after being launched on their very own recognizance — set free pretrial with out supervision — and posting bail additionally stayed roughly the identical over that three-year stretch.
“As a general rule, at least in New York City, the numbers pretty much stayed the same or improved in terms of rearrests over those past three years,” Dinowitz stated.
In response, Popcun stated Dinwotiz’s summation was appropriate.
“Well, see here’s what I don’t understand: I keep reading some newspapers that rearrests are skyrocketing, but this data shows the exact opposite,” the Meeting member stated.
However, throughout his line of questioning, Republican Meeting Member Michael Tannousis (Staten Island/Brooklyn) prodded DCJS officers about how those that fail to look for desk look tickets are recorded within the information they compile.
Tannousis took problem with feedback made by DCJS officers earlier within the listening to that those that fail to look at a police station home or at court docket to be fingerprinted upon receiving a desk look ticket aren’t recorded of their information, as a result of their numbers solely embrace those that’ve been fingerprinted.
“If they were issued a desk appearance ticket and failed to appear to be finger-printed, we wouldn’t be able to capture their data,” Popcun stated.
Tannousis asserted that, as a result of many jurisdictions downgraded misdemeanors to desk look tickets after the bail laws had been carried out, there are probably many repeat offenders who aren’t being accounted for in DCJS’ information. However Popcun stated the Meeting member must ask particular person legislation enforcement entities for affirmation of that.
Moreover, Tannousis stated, he doesn’t perceive why the governor has been persistently making an attempt to tweak the bail laws, if she’s considered the identical information being introduced to state lawmakers.
“The governor has put out there to the press, to the legislature, that she wants to make changes to bail reform,” Tannousis stated. And “that is after, presumably, she received a report which says that crime is down 24% in the state.”