Adams, a moderate Democrat and former police officer, has called for bail laws to be changed to give judges the discretion to consider a defendant’s ‘dangerousness’ to the community as a key part of efforts fight against growing crime in the city.
In New York, unlike every other state, judges cannot take into account the harm a defendant may cause to others when setting bail.
Adams and NYPD Commissioner Keechant Sewell said judges should be able to consider public safety and be allowed to dismiss defendants on their arraignments “based on the seriousness of their alleged crimes or backgrounds.” of recidivism”.
Adams insisted Wednesday on releasing the new recidivism data and his role in the city’s crime wave was not an attack on bail reform but rather a window into what he called a “door turning point of justice”.
“Because of this insane and flawed system, our recidivism rates have skyrocketed and those who say the predicted wave of recidivism wouldn’t happen, and the studies that claim to show the arrest rate for violent crimes don’t hasn’t changed since the reforms were passed, I have one word for you – wrong. You’re wrong,” Adams told reporters during a press conference with NYPD chiefs.
Adams and police officials said 211 defendants had been arrested at least three times for burglary through June this year, a 142.5% increase from 87 people in the first six months of 2017 .
For shoplifting, 899 people were arrested three times through June, a jump of 88.9% from the 476 charged during the same period in 2017.
Adams and police officials said nearly 25% of those arrested for burglary committed another crime within 60 days, up from 8% in 2017. Robbery and robbery data showed increases almost identical for 2021, compared to 2017, city officials said.
Officials said the city’s “worst of the worst repeat offenders” include an offender with 101 career arrests – including 88 since 2020; another defendant on parole after 57 arrests since 2020, including 23 for burglary; an offender now on the street despite 63 arrests, including 13 for major car theft and 39 arrests since 2020.
In a statement, the Legal Aid Society accused the Adams administration of selecting “a handful of cases to mislead New Yorkers and convince them that bail reform is responsible for all of society’s ills.”
The nonprofit public defenders organization urged the state legislature to reject calls for a “dangerousness” provision in the bail law. “Barring a crystal ball, no judge – or human being for that matter – can predict future behavior,” the statement said.
“Condemning more New Yorkers to languish on Rikers Island — a facility mired in crises perpetuated by this administration’s inability and unwillingness to act meaningfully — is not the answer, and we warn the public to not to fall prey to this endless fear, devoid of facts and unfounded in reality,” the Legal Aid Society said, referring to the city’s troubled prison complex.
Marie VanNostrand, an analyst at Luminosity, which studies criminal justice data, said she hadn’t seen the city’s data, but the mayor’s suggestion that a small number of people were arrested, released and then released. new arrests for serious crimes is consistent with other data on the matter.
“The number of people arrested now who have pending cases – which the mayor is referring to – has actually increased. Now the causes of that are not necessarily clear,” she said.
“The mayor made reference to bail reform… We also know that cases take longer due to pandemic court closures and that sort of thing. So there are certainly potentially causal factors. competitors.”
Still, VanNostrand said violent crime and gun violence are increasing across the country, including in states that haven’t implemented bail reform.