NY may eliminate money bail for low level offenses

Early this week, I reported that Alaska joined a growing number of states eliminating their money bail systems.

Now New York state may join the ranks as well as reported by the New York Times:

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo plans to ask the New York State Legislature to eliminate cash bail for many crimes and to speed up the disclosure of evidence in trials as part of a package of proposals intended make the criminal justice system fairer for indigent defendants, his aides said.

The proposals will likely be similar to what has been in place in New Jersey and Kentucky and Alaska:

The measure that Governor Cuomo is proposing would eliminate cash bail for people facing misdemeanor and nonviolent felonies. Instead defendants would be released, either on their own promise to return to court, or with some other conditions imposed by the judge. Judges could still impose bail for serious violent crimes, like felony assault or rape, but only after reviewing a defendant’s finances.

Cuomo, a Democrat, follows the lead of three Republican governors in Alaska, New Jersey, and Kentucky in eliminating cash bail and/or substnatially modifying their pretrial bail procedures. In Alaska,

With the new reforms in place, PEW estimates that the number of inmates will decrease by 13 percent and that the state will save $380 million. The state plans to reinvest $98 million of that total over six years in crime victim services, pretrial services and supervision, re-entry support, substance abuse and mental health treatment in both prison and communities, and violence prevention.

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