State Sen. Kaminsky: Democrats have plan to fix bail reform law
The state’s new bail reform laws have been a source of controversy since they were enacted, seen as flawed due to multiple repeat offenders who were arrested and went directly back to committing crimes.
State Sen. Todd Kaminsky told News 12 that state Senate Democrats are proposing a new plan, which would give judges more discretion and expand the list of crimes for which a suspect could be held behind bars.
That new list would include three kinds of misdemeanors – hate crimes, sex crimes and domestic violence charges.
Under the new plan, all felonies and any crime involving a death would mean the suspect could be kept in jail or tracked with a monitoring device. Cash bail would be eliminated from the equation.
In recent weeks, several suspects accused of felonies have walked out of court. In some cases, they allegedly committed the same crime right after being released.
State Sen. Kaminsky says the proposed changes will keep the system fair by taking money out of the picture while also keeping the public safe.
It's not clear how quickly state lawmakers might act on these proposed changes. The governor would also have to sign off on the revised law.
Last month, Jordan Randolph was accused of driving drunk on the William Floyd Parkway and killing 27-year-old Jonathan Flores-Maldonado. Randolph had just been arrested 11 days before that crash for allegedly tampering with an interlock device in his car. Records also show he had a long history of DWIs.
The victim's relatives say the state's bail reform law contributed to their loved one's death and has to be changed.
“We believe that without this bail reform law, my cousin, Jonathan, would still be here with us,” says Dylan Page. “We believe that this person would have been behind bars.”