Bail reform backlash continues to grow

Local News

ELMIRA, N.Y. (WETM) — The cries to repeal New York State’s bail reforms passed by the legislature last session are getting louder by the day.

Victims impacted by the new criminal justice reforms will be in Albany on Wednesday voicing their anger.

40-year-old Jordan Randolph walked out of court without having to post any bail. He was charged with DWI for allegedly driving drunk and killing a 27-year-old, Jonathan Maldonado, in a crash early Sunday morning in Suffolk County.

Court records show Randolph has a history of driving drunk. Still, under the new bail reform law, he walked free.

The new law prohibits arraignment judges from demanding bail for certain defendants or sending them to jail. Instead, they must release them.

The new bail reform law has taken a toll on law officials throughout the state of New York, but it’s also taken a toll on local residents throughout the Southern Tier.

“I understand the idea of the bail reform and I get where it’s coming from… The issue is that they tied the judges’ hands where the judge can’t say: ‘Hey, you know, this guy has priors. This offense that he just did might not be so bad, but because of the stuff he did previous to this, I need to keep him in here.'”

Michelle Banach, Local Resident

A Glens Falls man who served time in prison is speaking out against bail reform.

Jace Varney feels bail and his prison term ensured one thing: that he would not commit other crimes.

“If I was to be let go on that, or if I was to get away with it, I wouldn’t have stopped being who I was. I wouldn’t have stopped the things that I was doing,”

Jace Varney

Local State Senator Tom O’Mara has issued a petition calling for amendments to the bail reform laws.

The assembly minority leader will be joined by victims impacted by the new criminal justice reforms at a rally to call for assembly democrats to address the law.

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