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The Bronx Defenders Criminal Defense

The Bronx Defenders releases its report “The Hidden Tax: Economic Costs of Marijuana Enforcement in the Bronx and New York City”

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE December 17, 2014 Contact: Scott Levy, The Bronx Defenders, 718-838-7833, ScottL@bronxdefenders.org The Hidden Tax: Economic Costs of Marijuana Enforcement in the Bronx and New York City New York – The Bronx Defenders released The Hidden Tax: Economic Costs of Marijuana Enforcement in New York, a report by The Bronx Defenders Fundamental Fairness…

New York Law Journal: Panel Addresses Problems With Overwhelmed Summons Courts

In response to the New York City Police Department’s change in approach to low-level marijuana possession offenses, defense attorneys who have worked in the Summons Courts warned that the system is already strained enough. During a New York City Council hearing on Monday, attorneys in several legal service organizations discussed multiple flaws in the summons…

Spotlight on BxD’s work with veterans and service members

Every day, many of The Bronx Defenders’ clients who are veterans, service members, or interested in future military service face unique challenges and issues that are often overlooked or ignored. Through our interdisciplinary and holistic approach, The Bronx Defenders represents veteran clients in Criminal Court, Family Court, and Housing Court, provides advocacy in other administrative…

The Bronx Freedom Fund releases its first Annual Report

The Bronx Freedom Fund released its first annual report this week, showing the Fund’s impact since opening in October 2013. As the first licensed charitable bail organization in New York State, the Bronx Freedom Fund helps eligible clients of The Bronx Defenders post bail in misdemeanor cases where they and their families are unable to afford…

The Bronx Defenders wins its first ever civil jury trial

This October, The Bronx Defenders won its first ever civil jury trial. Our Civil Action Practice Attorneys Karen Maxim and Graham Dumas litigated the case of their client, Ms. Lopez (not her real name), who faced eviction when the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) brought a housing case against her and accused her of using…

NPR: Should A Criminal Record Come With Collateral Consequences?

Maurice Alexander was 61 when he was convicted on a misdemeanor charge. He only served ten days in jail, but six years later it would cost him a chance at affordable housing and leave him homeless for nearly seven months. Federal, state, and local laws impose a convoluted network of barriers on anyone with a…

Skylar Albertson spoke before NYC Board of Correction on solitary confinement concerns

On November 18th, Skylar Albertson spoke at a NYC Board of Correction (BOC) meeting concerning the use of solitary confinement and the Department of Correction’s (DOC) proposal to create Enhanced Supervision Housing (ESH) units at Rikers Island. The BOC, an independent oversight agency responsible for setting guidelines for the DOC, has been engaged in a…

Robin Steinberg and Scott Levy are panelists at Cardozo Law Review Symposium

Bronx Defenders Executive Director Robin Steinberg and Fundamental Fairness Project Director Scott Levy are both panelists at Cardozo Law School’s symposium “The Underbelly of the Beast: Misdemeanor Practice in the Era of Broken Windows and Saturation Policing,” taking place December 3rd and 4th, 2014. The symposium is presented by Cardozo Law Review and by Cardozo’s Criminal Defense Clinic…

Molly Kovel testified in front of New York City Council on Fair Chance Act

Yesterday The Bronx Defenders’ Legal Director of the Civil Action Practice, Molly Kovel, presented written and oral testimony before the New York City Council Committee on Civil Rights regarding The Bronx Defenders’ enthusiastic support for the proposed Fair Chance Act, which would protect the thousands of people with criminal records in New York City against some of the…

The Bronx Defenders Responds to Mayor de Blasio’s Initiative to Address Mental Health Crisis in NYC’s Criminal Justice System

The Bronx Defenders commends Mayor de Blasio for taking a major step toward addressing one of New York City’s most troubling criminal justice issues: the criminalization of individuals with mental health issues and substance use disorders. In announcing a $130 million initiative to divert these New Yorkers away from incarceration and into treatment, the City…

The Bronx Defenders’ Statement on Ferguson

The Bronx Defenders today reiterates its support for the families and communities of Mike Brown, Akai Gurley, Eric Garner, Ramarley Graham, and the countless number of young men of color who have been victims of police brutality. The announcement last night of a No True Bill against Officer Darren Wilson exposed long-standing feelings of injustice…

New York Post: Mayor pushes mail-in policy for marijuana fines

Mayor de Blasio wants to include ethnic and ­racial data on the NYPD’s new marijuana summonses — and allow people to pay fines by mail. The convenience would be similar to a system already in place for drivers who can get rid of parking tickets with a check and a stamp. “That’s a choice that…

The Bronx Defenders’ Statement in Response to President Obama’s announcement on Executive Immigration Action

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Jennifer Friedman, The Bronx Defenders, 718-508-3408 or JenniferF@bronxdefenders.org Last night, families around the Bronx held their breath as the President announced sweeping changes that will expand work authorization and protect millions of immigrants from deportation. At The Bronx Defenders—and for the families we represent—the announcement was met with a mix of…

Come Out and Support BxD’s Home for the Holidays Happy Hour and Gift Drive!

The Holiday Season is around the corner, which means The Bronx Defenders’ ‘Home for the Holidays’ Happy Hour and Gift Drive is getting started! Every year, The Bronx Defenders’ Client Emergency Fund organizes a Gift Drive through our Amazon Wishlist to provide gifts for our clients’ children during the holiday season when they otherwise might…

Brooklyn Independent Media: Pot Arrest Policy

“The much larger issue is racial disparity in arrests: Citywide 86% of the people being arrested [for marijuana possession] are black and latino.” – Scott Levy, The Bronx Defenders   The Bronx Defenders Fundamental Fairness Project Director Scott Levy, together with Gabriel Sayegh of the Drug Policy Alliance and Shapriece Townsend of Vocal NY discuss…

The Bronx Defenders’ Scott Levy on Hot 97’s Street Soldiers with Lisa Evers Discussing the NYPD’s New Marijuana Policy

Scott Levy, Project Director of The Fundamental Fairness Project at The Bronx Defenders, took part in a dynamic conversation surrounding the NYPD’s new marijuana policy on “Hot 97 Street Soldiers with Lisa Evers.” The radio program brought together drug policy experts, legal experts, law enforcement officials, and individuals with previous criminal justice involvement to discuss and debate…

NY1 Noticias: La Policía de Bill de Blasio y las minorías de Nueva York

La posesión de pequeñas cantidades de marihuana ya no desembocará en arresto, sino en multa o citación judicial. El concejal de Brooklyn y Queens Antonio Reynoso, Priscilla González, de Comunidades Unidas por una Reforma Policial y Walter Rodríguez, de Bronx Defenders, analizan las políticas policiales del alcalde Bill de Blasio y las relaciones entre la…

NBC 4 New York: I-Team Exclusive: Cops in Ticket Fixing Scandal Still on the Beat

In an I-Team exclusive report on NBC 4 New York investigating NYPD officers involved in a ticket-fixing scandal where they were caught asking for illegal favors, Bronx Defenders Managing Director of the Criminal Defense Practice Justine Olderman and Criminal Defense Attorney Phil Hamilton talk about the unfair lack of transparency when police officers conduct is…

Sixteen Bronx Defenders staff members presenting as panelists at the 2014 National Legal Aid & Defender Association Conference

At this year’s National Legal Aid & Defender Association (NLADA) conference, Blueprint for Justice: Designing a New Paradigm for Impact, a total of 16 Bronx Defenders advocates — attorneys, social workers, and data and technology specialists across the Criminal Defense, Family Defense, and Civil Action Practices, as well as the Technology & Evaluation Department — will be presenting on 4 different…