Dispute between Kathy Hochul, New York judges, over bail reform

Mayor Eric Adams’ ongoing efforts to reverse the state’s bail bond reform law have sparked a war of words between Gov. Kathy Hochul and New York judges over who is responsible for the state’s revolving door justice system.

In a highly unusual move, a spokesman for the New York City bureau of court administration Friday responded to Hochul’s suggestion on Thursday that the state pay to train judges on the controversial law.

“Judges have received extensive training on bail reform, including all changes,” spokesman Lucian Chalfen said.

A magistrate called Hochul “disingenuous” and told The Post that crimes that were once eligible for bail are no longer possible “because her former boss passed these changes that she supported.

“We’re the only branch of government that doesn’t speak openly in the press, so we’re the easiest scapegoats,” said the outraged lawyer.

Albany County District Attorney David Soares called Hochul’s offer to train judges “insulting” and accused her of “some of the best and brightest working in public service are not astute enough to understand what is sometimes incomprehensible.” Laws are we have with … living together.”

The head of the state district attorney’s office said: “The risks to the public sThe security provided by this law will remain in place” until Hochul and the state legislature allow judges to consider the danger of releasing defendants when considering bail.

Albany County District Attorney David Soares said Hochul's idea was for judge training "offensive."
Albany County District Attorney David Soares said Hochul’s idea for judge training was “insulting.”
Hans Penink

“Denying judges the ability to make bail decisions with the very discretion they should exercise in every other aspect of their work has also led to the release of too many defendants, who are returning to the communities and victims they tormented.” said organization chief, Washington County Attorney Anthony Jordan.

GOP gubernatorial candidate and Long Island Rep. Lee Zeldin also chimed in.

“Instead of giving New York judges the ability to do their job, dangerousness, flight risk and, yes, the ability to afford bail, Kathy Hochul is spitting in the face of our justice system to appease her extreme left-wing base,” he told the Post in a statement.

“Hochul’s pandering to pro-criminal backers results in handcuffs on our judges and law enforcement instead of cracking down on criminals.”

GOP gubernatorial candidate Rep. Lee Zeldin accused Hochul "spit in the face of our legal system."
GOP gubernatorial candidate Rep. Lee Zeldin accused Hochul of “spitting on our justice system’s face.”
Jacob Messerschmidt

But Hochul spokeswoman Hazel Crampton-Hays fired back in a statement: “The notion that the judges’ hands are tied is simply not supported by facts or data.

​”​Judges have and use their wide discretionary powers under the law every day. That’s according to data released by the courts themselves, which shows judges outside of New York City are freeing people for the same types of crimes at lower rates.

“This was true before the 2019 law changes and is true now, and indeed earlier this year Gov. Hochul worked with lawmakers to further expand the types of cases in which judges have discretion to set bail or remand people. “ Dispute between Kathy Hochul, New York judges, over bail reform


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