CLIFTON SPRINGS, NY- Maybe we can call it the law of unintended consequences? Or perhaps this is exactly what the New York State legislature and uber-liberal Gov. Andrew Cuomo intended.
A sheriff in Clifton Springs, NY has said that due to the impending implementation of criminal justice “reform” measures in New York, a man who was arrested for sex-related charges involving a child has been released from custody without posting bail.
Sheriff Kevin Henderson said that Christopher Cole, 24, of Clifton Springs was arrested as part of a joint task force consisting of the FBI’s Child Exploitation Human Trafficking Task force along with a member of the Ontario County Sheriff’s Office.
According to Henderson, the investigation conducted by the task force showed that on April 8th of this year, Cole shared a photo of a naked female child aged between ten and twelve on a chat application called KIK. As a result of this investigation, a search warrant was obtained and executed at his home, during multiple devices were seized.
Henderson said that Cole was processed and released to appear in court at a later date.
In a press release, Henderson said that due to the new bail reform laws set to go into effect Jan 1, the charges that Cole is facing are not a “qualifying offense” to set bail. He said that due to the bail reform implementation being so close, prosecutors are following the procedures of the new guidelines.
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So, let’s get this straight. A 24 year-old-man shares pictures on the Internet of a child between the ages of ten and twelve, and this is not considered a serious enough offense to justify a cash bail? As Rod Serling would have said, we are truly in “The Twilight Zone.”
Think about something. This week we saw someone who burned a flag sentenced to fifteen years in jail. Fifteen years for burning a flag. Of course, if he had burned the American flag instead of the rainbow flag he would have been celebrated far and wide by the left-wing moon bats.
We at Law Enforcement Today have been all over this new social engineering law in New York State that has been endorsed by every left-wing organization out there. The new law allows cash bail only in the case of “serious felonies.”
Even some judges in New York have publicly criticized the law.
A Manhattan judge has confirmed what many in law enforcement, as well as some government officials are already thinking about new criminal justice “reforms” due to go into effect in New York State on January 1.
Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Maxwell Wiley sharply criticized the new reforms in open court on Wednesday. Wiley, in addressing one burglary suspect, said he believed it went “against all common sense and wisdom” to release him.
In yet another case, a man who was facing charges related to robbery with a possible sentence of four years in prison, had Wiley rolling his eyes before ordering the man, Jose Gonzalez, released.
“The law is stupid, but I have to follow it,” Wiley said, almost reluctantly.
Wiley, a graduate of University of Wisconsin School of Law, was appointed to the bench by Gov. George Pataki in 2003 and reappointed by Gov. David Patterson in 2009.
As LET previously reported, the New York state legislature passed a series of laws earlier this year with the goal of reducing “mass incarceration” and fixing so-called “unfairness” in the criminal justice system.
The series of laws requires judges to release people who are charged with misdemeanors and “nonviolent’ felonies without bail, and issue an appearance ticket, tantamount to a traffic citation. In addition, prosecutors need to provide all evidence to be used in the case to defense attorneys within 15 days.
The law also requires that anyone currently incarcerated who is being held on said misdemeanors and “non-violent” felonies must be released when the law goes into effect. It’s kind of like a Monopoly “get out of jail free” card.
Criticism of the new measures has been far and wide, ranging from police officers to prosecutors, town and city officials, and mostly Republican legislators. One Democrat, however, has been particularly vocal in his opposition to the new regulations.
Freshman Congressman Max Rose joined Republicans in criticizing the new requirements, saying that they went “too far, too fast.”
“We can and we must ensure our justice system is fair and maintains our public safety—but the fact is with the bail and discovery reforms Albany went too far, too fast,” Rose said in a statement.
“That’s why I’m joining law enforcement and bipartisan colleagues from across the state in calling for quick action in Albany to ensure the safety of our communities—and especially the victims of these crimes—are not put in jeopardy.”
As a US Congressman, Rose has no jurisdiction over the state’s criminal justice system. However, Rose joined three other Republican Congressmen—Tom Reed, Peter King and Elise Stefanik—in expressing concerns over the reforms in a written letter to New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
“While we agree criminal justice reform has long been needed around the country, New York State’s new soft-on-crime bail laws, which will let dangerous criminals roam free, endanger their victims and hamstring the authorities who want to hold them accountable, this is not the answer,” the congressmen said in a letter.
According to Breitbart, among the crimes where suspects will be freed from custody before trial are:
- Second-degree manslaughter
- Aggravated vehicular assault
- Third-degree assault
- 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
- Making terroristic threats
- Criminally negligent homicide
- Aggravated vehicular homicide
Non-violent crimes? Recently a suspect in Warren County New York was arrested and charged with second-degree manslaughter. He allegedly struck a bystander while leading police on a high-speed chase. He is currently in jail awaiting trial however in January, he will be a free man when the new bail guidelines go into effect.
Criminals have gotten so bold as to thank Cuomo for signing the “jailbreak” legislation, according to the New York Daily News. “Cuomo for president!” the accused drug dealer shouted in Spanish. The man allegedly had caused the death of a man who overdosed on drugs sold to him by the dealer’s crew.
This nonsensical “reform” movement has not been restricted to New York. On a federal level, the First Step Act that was signed into law by President Trump has freed hundreds of criminals charged with sex crimes, nearly 60 convicted murderers and assailants, and almost 1,000 individuals charged with drug crimes.
Joel Francisco is among those released under the First Step Act. Who is he? Well, he’s the former leader of the “Latin Kings” gang who, as soon as he was released, returned to a life of drugs and one other thing. He now stands accused of murder.
Nobody believes that someone who has a low-level drug beef, such as possession of marijuana, should be locked up in jail. It isn’t a violent crime and so long as the marijuana is being consumed for private use and not being sold on the street, it’s not that big a deal.
But when you are talking crimes of violence, sex crimes involving children, and threatening to commit terrorism, one must wonder what these legislators, and President Trump are thinking.
We just saw a couple of weeks ago the result of terrorist acts on our own soil with the incident that happened in Jersey City, NJ. By tying the hands of law enforcement, and forcing judges to release violent criminals out of some feel good, virtue signaling criminal justice “reform”, how long before we don’t end up with “only” three civilians and one police officer killed, but many, many more?
Justice Wiley is right. The law is “stupid.”
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