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District Attorneys Warn De Blasio That Dangerous Inmates Are Being Recommended for Release

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March 30, 2020 By Allie Griffin

New York’s five district attorneys and the special narcotics prosecutor said the mayor’s office has put forward the names of several dangerous inmates for release–in his attempt to stop the outbreak of coronavirus in city jails.

The head prosecutors said the mayor and the Department of Corrections had suggested releasing inmates who are serving time for domestic violence and sexual assault crimes, despite their pledge last week to exclude them from being released.

They called the administration’s decision making process of who gets released “haphazard” in a joint letter to Mayor Bill de Blasio and the Department of Corrections (DOC) Commissioner Cynthia Brann.

The mayor is currently releasing hundreds of low-level inmates who have health problems or are advanced in age– since they are particularly vulnerable should they contract the virus.

The prosecutors said they support decreasing the number of incarcerated in order to limit the spread of the virus on Rikers Island and in other facilities — but don’t support the release of inmates who would endanger victims.

“As an example, when we learned last week that the Commissioner of Corrections was about to use her authority to order an across-the-board release of hundreds of inmates serving city sentences, we were assured that the release would not include those serving time for domestic violence or sex offenses, given the risks to victims,” they wrote. “Unfortunately, we later learned that such individuals were indeed included in the ranks of those to be released.”

They asked de Blasio and Brann to evaluate the threat to public safety when choosing to release inmates.

The prosecutors — who include Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz — said the City’s eligibility requirements for release also fail to consider the housing, supervision and support service needs of inmates who are returned to their communities.

They wrote that if such needs aren’t addressed, they “will only compound the possible health, safety and other risks, both to the communities and to the individuals at issue.”

They asked de Blasio and Brann to provide additional resources including supervision for the recently released inmates.

The top prosecutors further asked that the city ensure the safety and health of inmates who will remain detained amid the coronavirus pandemic. The inmates must live in sanitary conditions with quality medical care, they wrote.

They also asked that a specific plan be established for inmates who contract COVID-19 in terms of treatment and oversight, including infirmary or hospital care as needed, and that inmates slated for release be tested for the virus prior to their release.

Lastly, they said additional resources should be allocated to protect victims and survivors who may be more vulnerable should their attacker be released back into the community.

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16 Comments

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Plato

@Olivia: forgiveness and keeping a criminal in jail are two separate things. Forgiving someone is very healthy, you move on from the incident. You must still keep them in jail because they ultimately did the crime.

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Larry Penner

Mayor Bill de Blasio reminds me of Mad Magazine’s Alfred E. Neuman. Newuman was fond of saying “What, Me Worry”. He claims to represent 99% of average New Yorkers, but lives the life style of the 1% behind a gated secure Gracie Mansion, with his own police detail providing round the clock protection, all on the taxpayers tab. This includes a security detail accompanying him to the gym. He doesn’t have to worry about the more dangerous felons about to be released from Rikers Island who could easily become repeat offenders again. As a lame duck Mayor with only 21 months left in his term, he has no concerns about what he will leave behind. Pity his successor, who is going to have some mess to clean up.

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Nikki

So you tell us to stay home, save lives because of the Covid-19, yet you are letting criminals out of jail.

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Mac

Christina – America locks up people who have actually been committed of crimes like defrauding students out of $28 Million and veterans of $2 Million. When you’re well connected and convicted you just have to pay restitution.

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Christine Bagatta

This article is all a joke, right?? The one who should be locked up and never let out is our mayor…and throw in Nancy Pelosi while you’re at it…

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Woodside Resident

Leave the criminals in jail where they belong.
We need to protect our health & our city .
These rif raffs will only commit more crimes.

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LL

We all are going to end up catching it unless we stay home and wear protective gear outside. So they might as well keep them in jail. Why do you think so much media in NYC has quickly turned into broadcasting reporters, anchors, etc. on TV from home. Those that air in studio are probably getting tested daily in addition to camera operators. They know its not safe to be around people, talking to them or touching surfaces and paper. Social isolation is good but not enough to prevent it from spreading.

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Olivia

A quote from Pope Francis:
“God’s forgiveness is what we all need, and it is the greatest sign of His mercy. A gift that every forgiven sinner is called upon to share with every brother and sister he or she meets. It is beautiful to be forgiven, but you too, if you wish to be forgiven, forgive in turn. Forgive!”

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Maria

I am sure this also has a lot to do with officers complaining about working conditions at Rikers and not wanting to work there especially during the virus outbreak. I do not blame them. I believe that the city is trying to show the officers that it is doing its best to decrease prison size. IMO, many officers do not care about releasing inmates because they carry weapons and bring them home. Eventually when we all go back to work there will be fear and anxiety. We see it with the Amazon workers and delivery people. I am sure in a couple of weeks we will all know someone who tested positive or has died from the virus. For ex, my sister is a NYC educator and she wants schools to remain closed after one of her close colleagues tested positive last week. The only way she says she will go back is if she is provided with protective gear and there is extensive daily sanitizing throughout the building. She also believes that students should only be allowed in with masks and gloves.

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Reggie

De Blasio is doing the bidding of his real estate donors. They’re using this pandemic as a cover to expedite the closure of Rikers.

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What do billionaire elites like Trump have to do with this?

A luxury condo developer for the 1% is our president. That’s a bad thing now?!

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The 2nd protects the 1st

Wow… Get De Blasio out now!

If you’ve never owned a protection device now’s the time. M4s are easy to use so much that the Mrs. won’t/shouldn’t get that much kick back if she needed to use it.

It’s better that you have it and never need it rather than need it and don’t have it. A carry town is a polite town.

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Gun deaths are MUCH higher in states with liberal gun laws

Ignoring all evidence ever, gun towns are “polite towns,” “polite” as in massive more gun deaths.

You make a great point though, with all these criminals around we should make it easier for them to get guns.

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V.Schuler

Why Is It Necessary To Release Dangerous Criminals At This Time . Is The COVID Virus Not Enough For Us To Deal With?

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