Governor admits ‘adjustments’ to criminal justice reform may need to be made

NY Capitol News

NEW YORK (NEWS10) — For the first time, Governor Andrew Cuomo opened the possibility of changes to the newly enacted Criminal Justice Reform law. This after weeks of criticism from law enforcement, district attorneys, Republicans and even some Democrats.

The governor was in Manhattan Monday morning, announcing his 30th proposal of the 2020 State of the State address scheduled for January 8. After his announcement, he took questions from reporters.

One of the questions was about criminal justice reform. Cuomo responded by saying, “…changing the system, which we started to do, is complicated and then has a number of ramifications. There’s no doubt this is still a work in progress and there are other changes that have to be made. Again, it’s literally three or four days, the Legislature comes back next year and we’re going to work on it because there are consequences that we have to adjust for. “

The criminal justice law has been under intense attack for it’s new bail and discovery rules.

Suspects arrested for crimes ranging from second degree burglary to criminally negligent homicide will no longer be held on bail until their trials begins. Many people already jailed, prior to the law going into effect, have gotten their bail reduced or thrown out altogether. Law enforcement fear suspects, many of whom are repeat offenders, will be allowed back on the streets.

Under changes with discovery, prosecutors must turn over all evidence to defense attorneys within 15 days. Some district attorneys say the deadline is unreasonable and puts an added strain on their staff.

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