Queens District Attorney-Elect Vows To Be Even More Lenient With Criminals

“There’s going to be a new day in Queens County for defendants!” Queens District Attorney-elect Melinda Katz declared.

Queens, NY – Queens District Attorney-elect Melinda Katz has unveiled her plan to hold accused criminal less accountable for their actions by giving them more opportunities to cut sweetheart plea deals.

“There’s going to be a new day in Queens County for defendants!” Katz announced on Monday, according to the Gothamist.

Katz, who will take office on Jan. 1, said that she will abolish the prosecutors office’s current policy of refusing to negotiate plea agreements with accused criminals who refuse to waive their right to have their case heard by a grand jury within five days of their arrest.

“Beginning with cases newly arraigned on January 1, 2020, the DA’s staff will at all times be open to discussions aimed at resolving cases and will not withhold plea offers from persons who choose to exercise this statutory right,” Katz’s transition team said in a press release, according to the New York Post.

She also vowed to abandon the current policy of refusing to negotiate plea agreements with defendants who have already been indicted by a grand jury.

“The level of evidence necessary to secure a grand jury indictment is a ‘reasonable cause’ to believe that the person has committed the crime,” the transition team’s statement read. “Based on such a low standard of evidence, the rigid refusal to consider options other than a ‘top count’ guilty plea or trial is inconsistent with DA-elect Katz’s commitment to an open minded approach to case resolution that considers all possible dispositions of a case that will serve the ends of justice.”

Katz has promised to support efforts to make sure fewer criminals are ever arrested in the first place, and said she will support diversion programs whenever possible, the Gothamist reported.

“It’s going to come together because it’s the right thing to do,” she said.

In order to push her lenient-on-crime agenda, Katz also announced that she will be ousting at least seven members of the current eight-member executive staff, the Gothamist reported.

“As we change what we do in this office, it's important to have true believers because there are 700 people that work in that office,” she declared. “I can't be standing next to each one of them every single day.”

Katz also promised to continue releasing the names of law enforcement officers who had been flagged by her office for potential honesty issues.

The New York Police Department previously said that the officers contained on the questionable-credibility list had been placed there based on the subjective views of court judges, the Gothamist reported.

“Often, these findings are the result of insufficient preparation for testimony of the officer or the judge substituting [their] perception of the facts for the officer’s firsthand knowledge,” the NYPD said.

There is also “no mechanism to appeal a finding of adverse credibility against one of our officers,” the department said.

But Katz said she plans to keep releasing the officers’ names anyway, and said she will make sure police are given clear standards so they know how to avoid being flagged for accusations of creditability or dishonesty.

“I do think it’s a good idea to let those [names] out,” she said. “It’s important that there is faith in the law enforcement officials that are part of the evidence.”

Katz said that more replacements will be forthcoming, to include some bureau chiefs and deputy bureau chiefs, the Gothamist reported.

“Within 100 days, we are going to do another shakeup,” she declared.

The State of New York will also see a slew of so-called criminal justice reforms go into effect on Jan. 1.

Lawmakers have eliminated cash bail for nearly all criminal charges, so those arrested on offenses such as stalking, arson, resisting arrest, money laundering in support of terrorism, rioting, vehicular assault, unlawful imprisonment, negligent homicide, and a slew of drug-related charges will be allowed to walk out of jail without having to post bond.

Criminal offenses against children, including child abuse, promoting child prostitution, facilitating female genital mutilation, and possessing or promoting a sexual performance by a child will also be treated with a mandatory release.

Obstructing governmental duties by means of a bomb, killing a police K9 or horse, and obstructing emergency medical services personnel were also included on the no-jail list.

Offenders found in possession of a wide array of weapons – including guns, switchblades, swords, machetes, and stun guns – will instead be issued a “desk appearance ticket” and “set free,” the New York City Police Benevolent Association (PBA) pointed out in a Facebook post.

In addition to eliminating cash bail for hundreds of criminal offenses, as many as 900 inmates are expected to be released from jail under the law changes beginning this month, WCBS reported.

The city of New York has even launched a plan to hand out Mets baseball tickets and gift cards to offenders as an incentive to get them to show up to their scheduled court hearings after their no-bail jail releases.

Critics argued that doling out movie tickets, subway passes, and various store gift cards will reward criminal behavior, but New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said that the incentive program will be a success, according to WCBS.

“In a world where we want speedier trials and we want the justice system to work, if small incentives are part of what actually makes it work, then that’s a smart policy,” de Blasio told WCBS. “It’s not something we developed. It’s something that has been worked on by experts over time and proven to work and proven to be a good investment.”

As confident as the mayor may be in the plan, many of those who have actually worked with offenders disagreed.

Staten Island District Attorney Michael McMahon said the program is part of a “deranged mandate,” the New York Post reported.

“We are reaching the point of the absurd when those who are accused of serious offenses are free to roam the streets or even rewarded with gifts while the rights of victims continue to be ignored,” McMahon railed.

“They are tying our hands, they’re tying our feet and they’re gagging victims from coming forward to stand up for their rights,” McMahon added, according to the New York Post. “Many people accused with violent crimes, serious felonies, are going to be back on the street.”

Law enforcement was furious.

“In many cases, we have lost our ability to get people off the street even for a short-term basis. Even just a cool-down period,” Saratoga County Undersheriff Richard Castle told WTEN.

Undersheriff Castle said he was most worried about low-level burglary and robbery charges, as well as the number of bench warrants that will be issued when people stop showing up for court.

“So, if someone goes to your house and kicks in your front door and steals items out of your house and we catch them, they will be released. If they do it an hour later, they’ll be released again,” he explained. “Also, we’re now going to have to go find them when they don’t show up in court.”

In June, New York Police Sergeants Benevolent Association (SBA) President Ed Mullins warned that the bail reform would lead to “a free-for-all” equivalent to the movie "The Purge,” the New York Post reported.

“This is the beginning of it,” Mullins said. “Law enforcement is going to be out there holding this bag of crap when it starts. The judges are going to get the blame when they start releasing people back into the streets.”

Comments (38)
No. 1-25
RetiredCorrections
RetiredCorrections

It’s like a competition anymore to see what office can do the most for the criminals and at the same time , devalue the work of law enforcement

JBoH
JBoH

Just get rid of the NYPD and close the prisons and jails. Then there will be no need to make plea deals and they can just send criminals straight back to the streets without the inconvenience of incarceration.

Anomie88
Anomie88

That's very fashionable of her.

WatchYourSix
WatchYourSix

This all makes me sick to my stomach. Next few years in NY will be tough. Things are going to fall apart and we'll have to go back to broken windows policing in order to fix what Andy Cuomo and these liberal idiots are literally destroying, which by the way, they did without consulting with ANY law enforcement, judges or DAs.

Things will come full circle, but make no mistake about it, lives will be lost and families destroyed as a direct result, and the people who made these decisions won't take responsibility for it. We've seen the same thing with illegal immigrants who commit a crime and re-offend when they aren't deported because local Gov't released them and ignored ICE detainers. Instead they will make excuses and point the blame at LE, while rewarding bad actors with baseball tickets and gift cards. You'd HAVE to be smoking crack to think any of this was a good idea.

Oh, and Melinda Katz isn't qualified to be Queens DA. She was Borough president or some BS, but as far as I know she had little if any actual experience practicing law, and certainly none as a prosecutor.

Excalibr4
Excalibr4

"Escape from New York" a new reality show. Coming soon!

Watcher 1
Watcher 1

All you can steal and welfare too.

LostAllSanity
LostAllSanity

All of these social experiments have worked so well in... well... places like L.A., San Francisco, Portland - just to name a few. I guess that it is Melinda Katz goal to turn NYC officially into a sh-thole, too. Another social justice warrior that read a book on the topic...once...and now she is an expert with a big heart - except for the everyday people that will be living and working there. NYC - if you don't own a weapon, it might be time to get one. "The System" is going to abandon you for another "feel good" and dumb--ss idea.

Razorbackfan
Razorbackfan

Why do the idiots in NY still keep electing people like her and AOC? Are they so stupid they can’t figure out what’s right from wrong?

bryantrent
bryantrent

BS

whatalways3parts1
whatalways3parts1

Katz shows to be another ONE -sided, closed-minded and ignorant human being!

Katz also promised to continue releasing the "names of law enforcement officers" who had been "flagged" by her office for "potential" honesty issues.

Hah!! Release "Names of the people,"

that LEO's had, have dealth with, Their "potential honesty issues."

Flag them also!!!

Damn it!! It's the blame game again!!

186
186

Time to build another wall this time around New Your City Get Trump on the phone

Sargejh
Sargejh

When did prosecutors and DAs stop becoming advocates for victims and the states and advocates for criminals. Pathetic!

Inquirer63
Inquirer63

The obvious goal of these so-called “progressive” officials, many sponsored by George Soros, is chaos in the streets of America. But to what end? Perhaps a crisis to exploit, perhaps even to suspend constitutional liberties to impose an authoritarian one-Party state.

Stanracer
Stanracer

Why do people keep voting in these bleeding heart, hug-a-thug, police hating, liberal DA's? It there no-one else to vote for? It makes no sense!

Jim H. - Virginia US
Jim H. - Virginia US

CRIMES FOR WHICH A DEFENDANT MUST BE RELEASED FROM CUSTODY, WITHOUT BAIL, AFTER JANUARY 1ST:

According to the District Attorneys Association, offenses that don't qualify for bail in New York State include:

  • Assault in the third degree
  • Aggravated vehicular assault
  • Aggravated assault upon a person less than eleven years old
  • Criminally negligent homicide
  • Aggravated vehicular homicide
  • Manslaughter in the second degree
  • Unlawful imprisonment in the first degree
  • Coercion in the first degree
  • Arson in the third and fourth degree
  • Grand larceny in the first degree
  • Criminal possession of a weapon on school grounds or criminal possession of a firearm
  • Criminal possession of a controlled substance in the first and second degree
  • Criminal sale of a controlled substance in the first and second degree
  • Criminal sale of a controlled substance in or near school grounds
  • Specified felony drug offenses involving the use of children, including the use of a child to commit a controlled substance offense and criminal sale of a controlled substance to a child
  • Criminal solicitation in the first degree and criminal facilitation in the first degree
  • Money laundering in support of terrorism in the third and fourth degree
  • Making a terroristic threat
  • Patronizing a person for prostitution in a school zone
  • 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
  • Obstructing governmental administration in the first and second degree
  • Obstructing governmental administration by means of a self-defense spray device
  • Bribery in the first degree
  • Bribe giving for public office
  • Bribe receiving in the first degree
  • Promoting prison contraband in the first and second degree
  • Resisting arrest
  • Hindering prosecution
  • Tampering with a juror and tampering with physical evidence
  • Aggravated harassment in the first degree
  • Directing a laser at an aircraft in the first degree
  • Criminal possession of a weapon in the fourth degree
  • Criminal sale of a firearm to a minor
  • Enterprise corruption and money laundering in the first degree
  • Aggravated cruelty to animals, overdriving, torturing and injuring animals
  • Failure to provide proper sustenance
  • Animal fighting

michelle1964
michelle1964

What stupid woman. That's the problem now a days. To lenient on criminals. Hope one of pays a visit to her home in the middle of the night. Then maybe she will prosecute to the fullest. Or she may just release them on their word that they would show for courtu.

61mouse
61mouse

I would like to see the release of the young thugs names . They can commit adult crimes such as murder but their names can't be in the newspapers ? Release the parents name

c204
c204

reasonable suspicion is the level of proof needed to detain someone, and probable cause is the level of proof needed to arrest someone, but wth is "reasonable cause"? did she just make that up out of thin air?

Dark_ePoch
Dark_ePoch

"“Also, we’re now going to have to go find them when they don’t show up in court."

Easy, just track what seats DeBlasio gave them to the Mets game and pick them up during the National Anthem. Or 7th inning Stretch.

Caroparks53
Caroparks53

Time to leave ny for republican run states and cities..

LEO0301
LEO0301

I will be watching to see how this turns out for the good citizens of NYC. It won't be pretty, I assure you.

5150
5150

I am happy to see this type of thing happening. The liberals are turning their areas into total crap holes and have been for years. Eventually the residents will wake up and see liberal policies for what they are. A disaster. Some people just need to learn the hard way.

JMK2244
JMK2244

Good luck to the County of Queens, New York. When a prosecutor lets criminals off easy or go free, it's a sad sad day for law-abiding (and vulnerable) citizens.

Kevcali
Kevcali

It such a vicious circle. Criminals don't get prosecuted so they are still on the street to vote. And who will they vote for? The lenient prosecutor, judge, governor, all the way up to President.

Wish505
Wish505

Ah ha, who is receiving payoffs?