Paul Biagini Law Firm

NY State’s New Bail Reform Laws and What It Means for You

In 2019, in a historic decision, New York adopted a new law wherein the assessment of cash bail in cases including misdemeanors and non-violent crimes are ended. It means that people who have committed misdemeanors and non-violent crimes will be released with an aim to reduce the unne­ces­sary use of incar­cer­a­tion. In addition, except for some exceptions, the new bail reform law in New York eliminates cash bail to reduce the risk of the arrest of people just because they cannot afford to pay for the release.

Many people who have been charged with aggravated harassment and stalking cases are often innocent, or they don’t know what they did wrong. Unfortunately, there are also times when people have been arrested and put in jail just because they cannot pay their bail amount on time. The new bail reform law is a beacon of light for anyone who is solely behind bars because he/she cannot pay the bail money. The new law considers many cases not to be violent enough to pay bail cash.

The type of cases that will not be affected by the new bail reform laws are:

  1. Criminal contempt in domestic violence, all kinds of sex offenses, witness tampering, charges regarding terrorism, and offenses against children
  2. If a person is found guilty of operating as a significant drug trafficker
  3. If a robbery is aided by another or
  4. If a burglary is committed in a dwelling

Apart from these, all the arrest charges that a person has against them regarding misdemeanors, non-violent felonies, drug cases, burglary, and robbery, will be eligible for release with or without monetary conditions. However, the judge will be able to impose release conditions at the arraignment as they see fit.

If you have a harassment case against you, and the judge determines it is as non-violent, you will be eligible for release under these new bail reforms law too. New York’s bail reform law has noticeably lessened the role of cash bail in the criminal legal system, and law enforcement officers have seen a decline in the number of people behind bars rate in New York because of it. In addition, since it does not require law enforcement to hold people behind bars just because they cannot pay the bail money, they are now able to use the jail cells to hold more violent criminals.

Did the new bail reform law increase crimes in New York?

Even though many people believe that the new bail reform law will give people a pass to commit non-violent crimes without any consequence, they cannot be further from the truth. In fact, after the passing of the bail reform laws, New York has not seen any more crime than it normally did. There was no increase in crime overall; however, there was a notable spike in two types of crimes, gun violence, and homicide, in 2020, but it has increased across the country also. So, one cannot confirm it is because of the new reform law.

Why should you hire a defense attorney for your case?

Since aggravated harassment and stalking are not considered one of violent crimes under the new bail reform laws, if you are charged with such, law enforcement will not be able to hold for monetary excuses. However, if they arrest you with such a charge, having a defense attorney by your side is always the smart thing to do.

Paul Biagini is one of the leading defense attorneys that has helped several clients with harassment and stalking arrest records and sealed their records so that they can lead a better life. Even with the new bail reform law, you will need a good attorney to ensure that your charge is not overtly severe if it need not be

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