Finally, some cracks of common sense are beginning to open up in the veneer of tomfoolery surrounding last year’s so-called bail “reform” law, which kicked in Jan. 1. You know, the measure that prompted career criminal Charles Barry to giddily declare last Thursday, “Bail reform — it’s lit!” after his 139th arrest, his sixth of the year.
On Tuesday Barry was busted again, this time for allegedly conning some poor tourist out of $32 in Manhattan. “You can’t touch me!” he had declared. “I can’t be stopped!”
Ah, if only judges were able to hold people like Barry behind bars for a little while. Not to mention those six guys allegedly caught with $7 million worth of fentanyl ready for sale in the Bronx. Or that guy cops said killed a pedestrian in Harlem while driving drunk on New Year’s Eve. Or that Brooklyn woman who ... you get the idea.
This page has stood against the law, which forces judges to free suspects accused of most crimes, including many violent ones, without the option of imposing bail, since before it took effect. Now some of those state lawmakers responsible for passing it are becoming open to revisiting it.
They’re not likely to give judges what they really need: the ability to impose bail. Instead, they may ban bail in all cases but allow judges to simply hold certain defendants. That likely means more people getting locked up than the lawmakers wish ... which of course will lead to calls for more reform.
But at least this terrible new law may get fixed. Lawmakers are taking heat for it, and Democrats don’t want to lose control of the state Senate, which they just won in 2018. You might call whatever they pass the Suburban Democratic Senators Political Survival Act of 2020. We don’t care what you call it, so long as Charles Barry is unhappy about it and the law-abiding average Joe and Jane are safer on the street than they are today.