NYPD

More Good Outcomes from NYPD Arrest Slowdown—Less Harried Public Defenders

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And also, more time for hilarious hijinks!
"Night Court"—NBC

The massive reduction in the number of arrests and citations by the New York Police Department has lasted long enough now to filter down to the courts. As a result, New York City courts are a lot less busy. The New York Times focuses on idle clerks fiddling with smartphones and courtrooms shutting down early, but buried further into the story is good news for those the police do arrest. Public defenders now have more time to spare for them:

Few managers in the court system expect the current downturn to last. Many public defenders, however, said they hope the steep decline in minor arrests will become permanent. They noted felonies did not rise over the last three weeks as arrests for low-level crimes plummeted.

"This proves to us is what we all knew as defenders: You can end broken-windows policing without ending public safety," said Justine M. Luongo, the deputy attorney-in-charge of criminal practice for the Legal Aid Society.

Legal Aid lawyers and veteran clerks in the courts said the police appeared to be bringing in only people who they must have taken into custody: shoplifters caught by store owners, drunken drivers, people accused of assaulting their spouses or others accused of violent crimes. Felony arraignments did decline but not nearly as precipitously as misdemeanors, decreasing 25 percent to 1,026.

One public defender finished with her work "early" at 11 p.m. and noted that she was normally overbooked. We can only hope that the drop in clients also means each client's case gets a more thorough review, and poor defendants who can't afford lawyers are less likely to be pushed to take possibly bad plea deals. The Times ends its story noting that because of the NYPD slowdown, the silly arrests are now particularly notable:

Those arrested for relatively minor offenses now stand out. On Wednesday morning in Manhattan, William Talen, 64, who calls himself Reverend Billy, awaited arraignment. He had been arrested on Tuesday afternoon as he gave a sermon in Grand Central Terminal — protesting police brutality.

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  1. Well, if you’ve done nothing wrong, you don’t get arrested and NEED a public defender, so…

    No sympathy.

    /Police Onebot

  2. Those arrested for relatively minor offenses now stand out. On Wednesday morning in Manhattan, William Talen, 64, who calls himself Reverend Billy, awaited arraignment. He had been arrested on Tuesday afternoon as he gave a sermon in Grand Central Terminal ? protesting police brutality.

    It’s good to see that despite everything going on, the police still have their priorities.

  3. Once the city sees a drop in revenue from the slow down, they’ll do whatever it takes to get the money rolling in again.
    Parasites can’t survive long without feeding.

  4. This is the best part of the article:

    Correction: January 8, 2015
    An earlier version of this article misstated the year of the Sept. 11 terror attacks. It was 2001, not 2011.

    I am sure it was just a typo, but still!

    1. In high school I worked on the school newspaper (which was actually the back page of the local paper once every month or so). In one edition we referred to a teacher/coach at our school by accident as “Bod” instead of “Bob”.

      Since the coach was a small guy we all thought it was funny and made sure to make that same typo in any other story that mentioned it to him. The faculty advisor for the paper went crazy about it, but was never able to stop us from sneaking in that reference.

      Bod actually thought it was pretty funny and would tease me about it all the time (Jesse the Body Ventura was a popular AWA wrestler at the time), since he was my coach on a few teams.

      No real reason for this story except it still makes me laugh and after the recent deluge of nutpunches I feel like I deserve a laugh.

  5. but buried further into the story is good news for those the police do arrest. Public defenders now have more time to spare for them:

    If this was true 30 some odd years ago, Daniel Larusso would have never needed his cousin Vinny to come rescue him from trumped up murder charges. Then we, as a nation, would never have gotten to know Mona Lisa Vito. How can Scott think this is good news?

    1. +1 Ticking Biological Clock

  6. This is a all a racist plot somehow

    1. Anti-Smurf sentiment strikes the boys in blue?

  7. The cops are hoping to return to the status quo of unnecessary arrests once deBlasio makes some concessions – like flagellating himself while apologizing for criticizing the NYPD.

    We can only hope that the dispute continues – with ordinary “civilians” being, not collateral damage, but the opposite – collateral beneficiaries of a work slowdown which was not motivated by anything as tacky as the public interest.

    Perhaps the experience of not getting hassled by the police will build up a constituency, who will generate a backlash once the unnecessary arrests start up again. One can hope.

  8. Less harried public defenders… So Christine has time to shave? Yes, I’d say that’s a good thing.

    1. She’s a lawyer on Night Court, isn’t she? Otherwise I don’t get it.

      1. Yes, she was the public defender on Night Court.

  9. He had been arrested on Tuesday afternoon as he gave a sermon in Grand Central Terminal ? protesting police brutality.

    You know who else was arrested for preaching against authority?

    1. John Bunyan?

    2. Jesus

  10. I guess the blue line isn’t really that thin.

  11. I don’t know that it will end up making any difference what-so-ever but I really hope this shit keeps backfiring.

  12. Google pay 97$ per hour my last pay check was $8500 working 1o hours a week online. My younger brother friend has been averaging 12k for months now and he works about 22 hours a week. I cant believe how easy it was once I tried it out.
    This is wha- I do…… ?????? http://www.jobsfish.com

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