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Redefining public defense.

The Bronx Defenders Criminal Defense

Gothamist: NYPD Will Allow Defendants To Keep Religious Headgear On For Mug Shots

“Bronx Defenders, a pro bono attorney service, has sued the NYPD over its use of mug shots to build its facial recognition database, in violation of a 1976 law that keeps mug shots sealed. Facial recognition software was recently used to identify Derrick Ingram, a Black Lives Matter protester who quickly found himself besieged by dozens of NYPD officers….

Bronx Defenders Urge City and State Officials to Assist Incarcerated People with Stimulus Check Applications

***FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE*** Bronx Defenders Urge City and State Officials to Assist Incarcerated People with Stimulus Check Applications Nationwide Injunction Issued Recently Found that Incarcerated People Are Entitled to Benefits   October 5, 2020 Ryan Karerat, The Bronx Defenders (RKarerat@bronxdefenders.org) (NEW YORK, NY) – A federal court ruled that thousands of incarcerated people and their children…

Human Rights Watch: “Kettling” Protesters in the Bronx

“Human Rights Watch analyzed 155 videos that were recorded during the protest, some of which were posted on social media and others that were shared directly with Human Rights Watch. We also reviewed social media posts related to the protest and police scanner recordings from the 40th and 41st precincts on the evening of June…

Gotham Gazette: Time to Say Goodbye to NYPD Buy and Busts

“The protests following George Floyd’s murder have amplified two different, yet intertwined demands: to hold police officers accountable and to defund the police. In New York City, the NYPD’s continued use of predatory “buy and bust” operations, which target poor people of color and are conducted by detectives with long misconduct histories, exemplifies the imperative…

Brooklyn Daily Eagle: Brooklyn Defenders and others want transparent COVID protocols for NYC jails

“A group of legal service providers including Brooklyn Defender Services (BDS) came together to write a letter demanding that certain city agencies provide clear and transparent COVID-19 protocols for local jails. The groups, which also include the Legal Aid Society, the Bronx Defenders, New York County Defenders, Queens Defenders and Neighborhood Defender Service of Harlem…

Gothamist: Analyzing 323,911 Newly-Released Records Of NYPD Misconduct

“Michael Thomas, a staff attorney in the criminal defense practice for The Bronx Defenders, called the release “huge,” and predicted it would lead to major changes in how his cases will be tried, compared to the era in which 50-A shielded many records from discovery. “A lot of our cases that end up going to…

NBC News: Video of police abuses and the NYPD trampling the Constitution reveal inefficacy of ‘reform’

“Amid a summer of protest sparked by the police killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and others, much has been said about the importance of “reforming” police departments. But what if those departments cannot be reformed? This week, a video went viral showing the arrest of a young trans woman during a protest. The 18-year-old woman was tackled in broad daylight…

Lexology: Public Defenders Sue to Stop In-Court Appearances During COVID

“It is no secret that the COVID crisis poses a risk to criminal defendants, particularly those who are incarcerated or come from at-risk groups.  It is also no secret that the New York’s Office of Court Administration (the “OCA”) has been pushing hard to “return to normalcy,” in part to make sure that cases of…

Law360: Federal Judge Axes Suit Over NY Courts Reopening Plan

“The Bronx Defenders, Brooklyn Defender Services, Legal Aid Society, New York County Defender Services, Neighborhood Service of Harlem and Queens Defenders had argued the courts’ decision was “rushed” and has led to “chaotic” implementation of policies that violate federal civil rights protections including the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Rehabilitation Act. While Judge Carter denied…

The Appeal: New York City Public Defenders Oppose Resuming In-Person Court Appearances

“Resuming in-person court appearances won’t accomplish much, New York City public defenders argue. Critical deadlines for criminal cases remain suspended. And while the logistics around virtual court at times can be frustrating, the resumption of non-essential, in-person appearances at this stage does little more than endanger communities, said Ann Mathews, managing director of the criminal…

Urban CNY: Assemblymember Hunter’s bill to end driver’s license suspensions due to traffic debt passes Assembly

“We applaud Assembly Member Hunter for her leadership and the Assembly for passing the Driver’s License Suspension Reform Act and taking a major step forward to end the cruel and counterproductive criminalization of poverty,” said Ranit Patel, Equal Justice Works Fellow sponsored by the Venture Justice Fund at The Bronx Defenders. “Suspending driver’s licenses due…

Law360: NY Courts Urge Federal Judge To Stay Out Of Reopening Plan

“The Bronx Defenders, Brooklyn Defender Services, Legal Aid Society, New York County Defender Services, Neighborhood Service of Harlem, and Queens Defenders say the state courts’ decision was “rushed” and has led to “chaotic” implementation of policies that violate federal civil rights protections including the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Rehabilitation Act. While Judge Carter denied…

New York Law Journal: Federal Judge Denies Defenders’ Bid for Temporary Order to Pause New York City’s In-Person Court Proceedings

“U.S. District Judge Andrew Carter Jr. of the Southern District of New York on Friday denied the temporary restraining order requested by a group of New York City public defender organizations who say the planned expansion of in-person state court proceedings discriminates against persons with disabilities.” Read the full article here

ABA Journal: New York City public defenders file suit to halt in-person court appearances

“The suit was filed by the Legal Aid Society, Brooklyn Defender Services, the Bronx Defenders, New York County Defender Services, Neighborhood Defender Service of Harlem and Queens Defenders. The defendant is the New York State Office of Court Administration. Office of Court Administration spokesperson Lucian Chalfen told the Queens Daily Eagle that public defender groups…

Queens Daily Eagle: Public defenders sue state to stop in-person criminal proceedings during COVID crisis

“Until Monday, arraignments, case conferences and other criminal court proceedings were handled remotely, with defendants appearing by video conference since March. The plaintiffs include The Legal Aid Society, Queens Defenders, Brooklyn Defender Services, The Bronx Defenders, Neighborhood Defender Service of Harlem and New York county Defender Service. The organizations, which represent low-income defendants in criminal…

The Riverdale Press: Amid protests, budget cuts, crime rises in 5-0

“But that’s an unfair claim, said Eli Northrup, criminal defense policy counsel at the Bronx Defenders, a public defender nonprofit. “If anything, bail reform in the last month has been rolled back,” Northrup said. “I don’t think there’s any evidence that bail reform has anything to do with this. If you look, crime is actually…