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Chief judge Lippman announces judicial steps to reform bail in NYC

October 1, 2015 Associated Press
Chief Judge Jonathan Lippman. AP photo
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Judges in New York City will soon take a number of steps to reduce the number of pre-trial detainees jailed because they can’t raise enough money for bail.

Chief Judge Jonathan Lippman said in a speech Thursday that it’s unjust to jail low-risk defendants before trial because of finances.

He said that in the coming weeks, judges in all five boroughs will be appointed to review bail in every case. And he said he’ll mandate periodic status conferences in felony cases to see if prosecutors are ready for trial and to review bail conditions.

Unlike most states, New York requires judges consider defendants’ risk of flight in determining bail, not their risk to public safety.

Legislation to change that has stalled in Albany.

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